If you want to help patients achieve healthy smiles throughout your dental assistant career, their safety and well-being are likely your main concern. Because health and safety are one of your most crucial responsibilities as an intra oral dental assistant, you may be wondering exactly what tasks you can expect to perform in order to ensure excellent care standards for your future clients.
What are some of the common mistakes that intra oral dental assistants make that can potentially compromise the health and safety of their clients? What are some best practices to keep in your toolbox as your career progresses? Consider the answers to those questions below.
Your Role as an Intra Oral Dental Assistant
Your role will involve a wide variety of duties to support dentists and dental hygienists as they examine and treat patients. You will be responsible for preparing patients for dental exams and procedures, educating them on proper dental care, and maintaining dental equipment. Due to human error, on occasion, client safety is compromised in dental clinics. Common mistakes include a failure to consult past medical records, the use of unsanitized instruments, and emergency drugs being unavailable due to a lack of preparation. Luckily, there are several habits you can develop before your first day on the job that will help you prevent these common mistakes and uphold a high standard of care for all of your future clients after intra oral dental assistant training.
Always Be Diligent About Patient Records
One important safety precaution to take as an intra-oral dental assistant is to be very diligent about checking medical records. This will protect the client’s well-being in many ways. For example, ensuring that your clients are not allergic to any commonly prescribed medications will prevent adverse reactions and enable your team to make alternative treatment plans. Other factors to watch out for in client records include past trauma from surgeries or injuries that may cause the client pain or discomfort and medication your client might be taking that may affect a client’s oral health.
Make Sanitation a Priority During Your Career
The maintenance and sanitation of dental equipment are some of your core responsibilities as an intra oral dental assistant. Being meticulous about cleanliness will help prevent the spread of infection by disinfecting all surfaces and instruments– particularly those that are used for dental evaluations and treatments. Cross-contamination is a rampant issue that can easily be prevented by adding sterilization into your daily routine and cleaning as you work. Some dental assistants find it helpful to keep a checklist that covers things like drawer handles, countertops, and equipment switches.
Prevent Future Safety Hazards With Incident Reports
To encourage a safe, clean culture at your clinic, make it a habit to record any incidents that could compromise the health of your clients. This way, the dentists or supervisors who you work with can put systems in place to prevent risky errors in the future. When you take the Intra Oral Dental Assistant Diploma Program at the Canadian Academy of Dental Health & Community Science, you will learn microbiology, infection control, and safety in dentistry. You’ll also have the opportunity to practice the skills you develop in your practical work placement.
Ready to receive a dental assistant diploma?
Contact CADH to learn more!