Even though the past months of the pandemic have brought some trying times for everyone, including dental assistants, many say there’s still so much to be grateful for.
This is especially true for dental professionals who have the opportunity to work in the dental office each day, and who say they appreciate the following key factors about their role.
1. Their Employers
Dental assistants agree that having a supportive employer makes all the difference in whether they have a satisfying work experience. Those who are fortunate to have a strong working rapport with the dentist are grateful that this is the case for them.
“I’m thankful to have had the opportunity to work for a fantastic dentist,” says Nancy T. “He always said, ‘family is always first.’ He’s since passed away, but he truly was a remarkable person.”
Marita C. has had a similar experience and is grateful for her entire team: “The doctors I work for are great, as well as all the other oral surgeons, periodontists, orthodontists and general dentists who we work with,” she says. “Their employees would say the same. I’m blessed.”
2. Their Teammates
Dental assistants also appreciate having a strong dental team to work with, especially during stressful workdays when it’s all the more important to come together around a shared purpose — helping patients.
Erika B. loves working alongside her dental assistant colleagues. Collectively, they strive to uplift one another, as well as their entire team and patients. “We do a lot of good for our community, and we keep the office running,” she believes.
Laura S. agrees that dental assistants have a special role in the dental office, and she’s proud to be part of the practice: “We are the heartbeat of the dental office.”
3. Their Patients
Dental assistants are compassionate and always grateful for the opportunity to help provide patient care — even in the midst of a pandemic.
Laura S. acknowledges that the past six months have been challenging but nonetheless feels called to step up and do what she can to help.
“I’ve spent 37 years in this wonderful field and still love my job. Just when you think, ‘I’ve seen and experienced it all,’ you haven’t — and this has been all the more true recently. I work in pediatrics now, and it is my favorite specialty to date. Working with pediatric patients is the best!”
Maggie D. agrees: “I love being a dental assistant, especially when patients thank you for helping them.”
4. Career Growth Opportunities
Finally, dental assisting is a fast-growing profession, with opportunities to advance for those who are dedicated to expanding their knowledge base and skill sets. Many are grateful that they’ve been able to become a leader in the practice through their work as an assistant.
“Our entire assistant team has grown together in skill,” observes Brittany S. “It’s been the best experience.”
Dr. Kenneth F. is able to reflect on his dental career and see how his early work in assisting has been an asset.
“I started out in my career as an assistant, then became a dental hygienist, and am now a dentist. I’ve been ‘on the other side of the chair,’ so I know how valuable assistants are. I appreciate having had my assistant experience.”
Dental assistants, what are you grateful for?