The Dental Assistant is receiving patients, viewing charts and beginning patient preparation. Often the assistant will make notes about performed procedures, progress, recommendations and other subjects in the patient’s charts. The dental assistant will have a surgical focus and works under the doctor’s supervision to prepare the treatment rooms, equipment and instruments that will be used in advanced dental implant procedures. The dental assistant should be comfortable working with dental implants and the implant tools used in treatment for the All- On- Four Procedure. Assistants must ensure that surgical tools are properly cleaned and sterilized before procedures begin. Working with x-rays is common, as is processing items such as removable dental appliances and casts or impressions. Dental assistants do not perform any actual surgery upon patients, but they may be responsible for tasks such as checking vital signs or maintaining IV fluid flows during procedures.
Dental Assistant Responsibilities:
- Setting up and preparing the surgery before the start of each session
- Clean and disinfect all equipment and working surfaces to the required standards at the end of each session
- Keep the clinical areas and all equipment and instruments clean, tidy and sterile as appropriate according to the practice’s health and safety and infection control procedures and manufacturers’ instructions
- Use all equipment and machinery in accordance with manufacturers’ recommendations and ensure that they are maintained regularly and in good working order
- Provide chairside assistance, ensuring that the correct equipment is available
- Always ensure the care and welfare of patients in a friendly, helpful and courteous manner
- Accurately complete patient clinical records as directed
- Observe patient confidentiality at all times
- Perform chaperoning duties for dentists, hygienists/therapists when treating patients
- Handle all substances in accordance with Health and Safety policies
- Be familiar and comply with all Health and Safety rules and guidance infection control, and ensure safe disposal of sharps and clinical waste
- Complete laboratory request forms, keep records of work sent, received and fitted
- Ensure adequate stocks of materials and other items within the surgery
- Ensure computer/written records are accurately maintained and securely stored
- Liaise with reception to ensure smooth patient communications and transfer of records
- Other duties as necessary for the efficient operation of the practice, including the duties and tasks of receptionist as required
- Attend and participate in practice meetings
- Undergo training as may be required to develop your skills and abilities
- Attend refresher and update training for medical emergencies and CPR
- Act in accordance with the practice rules and code of conduct
- Assist in keeping clean the surfaces, sinks, floors of the surgeries and common areas of the practice reception, office, and staff room
- Needs to anticipate the Doctor in being one step ahead of him/her knowing what he/she will need so the surgery runs smoothly
- In an emergency situation react quickly to change/assemble equipment such as full face mask, laryngoscope, endotracheal tubes, etc.
- Knowledge of all emergency algorithms, medications and equipment
- Able to take x-rays: panorex and periapicals
- Have x-ray license.
Dental Assistant Work Environment:
- Dental assistants work in a well-lighted, clean environment.
- Work area is usually near the dental chair to allow for arranging instruments, materials, and medication and handing them to the dentist when needed.
- Dental assistants must wear gloves, masks, eyewear, and protective clothing to protect themselves and their patients from infectious diseases.
- Follow safety procedures to minimize the risks associated with the use of x-ray machines.
Dental Assistant Experience:
- 2 years of Oral Surgical Assistant experience
- Some prosthodontic experience
- Certified as a Dental Assistant by the A.D.A. or as an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgical Assistant by the D.A.N.B.
Dental Assistant Physical Requirements:
- Regularly required to work in an office environment at both his/her own and others’ desks/offices
- Required daily to walk the floor, sometimes for extended periods and be able to help wherever needed
- Able to regularly lift and/or move up to 50 pounds
- Able to stand for extended periods of time
- Able to keep hand and arm steady while moving arm or while holding arm and hand in one position
- Able to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate or assemble very small objects
- Able to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine to exact positions
- Able to bend, stretch, twist and/or reach with your body, arms and/or legs
- Must possess good multi-limb coordination – i.e. the ability to coordinate two or more limbs while sitting or standing
- Must possess good trunk strength – i.e. the ability to use abdominal or lower back muscles to support part of the body continuously or repeatedly over time without “giving out” or fatiguing
- Able to shift back and forth between two or more activities or sources of information
- Good manual dexterity required to enable safe, skillful use of instruments while working in the mouth
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