MEC graduate, Whitney assisting Dr. Sánchez during her internship pictured above.
When one goes to a new dentist for the first time, there are many factors that can make the difference between a positive and negative experience. In fact, the assessment of the office begins long before that person ever sits in the dental chair. A new patient enters the office and will immediately notice how clean the waiting area is, how long they have to wait and how friendly the receptionist is. But that is not all that is being determined!
When a person visits the office, they are going to pay special attention to those who serve them. They want to have a dental assistant who is friendly, knows what they are doing and someone who makes them feel comfortable. Whether or not you were first in your class or made the best set of dental impressions on the first try, really won’t matter, they want someone who can put them at ease and let them know they made the right in choice in visiting a particular office.
At Morrison Education Center, our students are not just taught the basics of providing quality dental care, they are taught proper chair-side manner, what the well ran front office should be, how to help keep a patient at ease and a variety of techniques and tips for interviewing for a dental assistant’s position. We spend time focusing on being able to explain dental procedures to patients so that when the patient has a question, the dental assistant can answer them without sounding ill prepared or trained
So what are character traits of a good dental assistant? Glad you asked! Many things can be said about the traits of the ideal dental assistant, but here are the top 3:
- A dental assistant must have the ability to work with others. Working in a dental office means not just knowing how to do the job, but being willing to listen and learn from those with whom you work. Every office has certain ways they do things, and you may find yourself discovering new ways to something you thought you already knew. Being open to new methods is a must.
- Communication is more than just talking. A dental assistant needs to listen to the patient as well as the dentist so that patient records are up to date and to ensure that as a dental assistant, one does not impede the work of the dentist.
- Chairside skills can be a deal breaker. A dental assistant must not only help put a patient at ease, but they need to have good manual dexterity, as they will often be using a variety of dental tools throughout the course of a dental visit. It is also vital, that a dental assistant be able to multitask, as this is a normal part of the dental assistant’s workday.