Intra-oral dental assistants are the right-hand to the dentist in any dental office. They balance multiple duties, including but not limited to infection control, safety protocols, management of client records and dental care. Their expertise makes them valuable members of a team and they provide essential help to both patients and dentists.
If you are thinking about pursuing intra-oral dental assistant as a career path, you’ll be happy to know how much of a difference you can make in other people’s lives in this position. Read on for what makes these assistants so crucial and valuable!
Intra-Oral Dental Assistants Increase Patient Comfort
Both intra-oral and level 1 dental assistants are helpful for anxious or uncomfortable patients. During procedures, they can soothe and comfort patients, and help them get through their appointments with as little stress as possible. Dental work is a bit intimidating for a lot of people and dental anxiety is common, so your interpersonal skills can help people feel seen, listened to and safe.
With the extensive knowledge and capabilities that an intra-oral dental assistant has, they are well equipped to answer questions from patients. This can help when calming a person, as you can speak with authority and explain the procedures to them. Knowing what to expect can be very soothing for people who are feeling unsure of what different procedures will feel like. This also takes some of the load off of the dentist, who can focus on properly providing care with your assistance. Without you, answering questions or concerns can fall on the dentist and reduce efficiency.
They Represent the Dental Office and Keep It in Order
A dental assistant is often the face of the dental office. Both level 1 and intra-oral assistants can be the first person a patient sees when they walk in the door and they’ll often spend more time with them than with the actual dentist. That means that showing kindness, competence and professionalism will portray the dental office in a similar light. Filling this role as well as assisting with procedures means you are able to multi-task throughout the day, which is an invaluable skill for a busy dental office.
Administrative responsibilities like record-keeping, making appointments and processing claims and payments may also fall on you in your career. While your specific duties can vary from one office to the next, quite often you will wear many hats and bring a sense of order and organization to the workplace. This makes you a very important member of the team who offers tremendous support to colleagues and patients.
Intra-Oral Dental Assistants Are Actively Involved in Dental Care
As opposed to level 1 assistants, intra-oral assistants have a more extensive involvement in patients’ dental care. Since they are trained further and have a wider knowledge base, they play a bigger role in more dental procedures. Your intra-oral dental assistant training equips you for additional responsibilities that combine with the ones taught to level 1 assistants.
For example, you’ll learn about the application of pit and fissure sealants, placement and removal of rubber dams, and taking impressions. The tasks that you perform also include preparatory and informative tasks, such sterilization, x-rays and educating patients about proper dental hygiene or dietary choices. These tasks are essential for any modern dental office to function well.
Are you interested in training for dental assistant careers?
Contact CADH for more information!