Dental assistants often say they are members of the best profession! We regularly hear all about the bright, memorable moments in your day — including having the opportunity to help patients. This is among the best parts of your role, you tell us.
What are some of your other favorite things about dental assisting? We looked to you for some insight and have compiled a great list that we’re excited to share with you, in honor of Dental Assistants Recognition Week!
1. Educating Patients
As a dental assistant, you spend so much time interacting with patients, getting to know them and answering their questions. Your conversations span many topics, but perhaps the most important discussion you can have with patients is about their oral health. We regularly hear that you enjoy educating patients all about the importance of dental hygiene, as well as procedures in the dental office and more.
“I enjoy educating our patients about products and techniques,” says Jessica H., CDA. “A lot of the knowledge I have I never knew until I went to dental assisting school.”
2. Easing Fears
Dental assistants agree that compassion is one of the most important qualities you share. And for good reason: A little compassion goes a long way when it comes to calming nervous patients. Compassionate dental assistants can always be counted on to offer kind words and a welcoming smile.
“The best thing about being a dental assistant is helping to ease patients’ fears and anxieties about coming to the dentist’s office,” says Stephanie M., CDA. “It’s a great feeling when a patient who was shaking and crying during their first visit now comes into the office smiling and laughing.”
3. Changing Smiles
Some patients may be unhappy about their smile and may wish it was brighter and healthier. Luckily, the dental team can help patients achieve this goal. You’ve told us that the best feeling is when patients who were once self-conscious about their teeth can smile confidently again, thanks, in part, to you.
“As an orthodontic assistant, the best part about my job is watching my patients change through each phase of treatment,” says Tracie T., CDA. “I have played a major role in developing smiles for years, and I love to see the results.”
4. Working Together
Many of you have found a home-away-from-home at the dental office, where your team members are like your family. You encourage and champion one another, and you always have one another’s backs. You also act as sounding boards for one another, exchanging newfound lessons learned. What can be better than this?
“The best thing about dental assisting is the satisfaction of being part of a team of professionals who work together for the good of their patients,” says Weeda J., CDA.
5. Learning Opportunities
Each day in dental assisting brings new opportunities to learn from the dentist, patients and other assistants. It seems there’s always a lesson that can be gleaned from each patient interaction or procedure, and dental assistants always welcome the opportunity to gain new wisdom. Some say this is their favorite aspect of their job!
“The best part of being a dental assistant is learning challenging new technologies to always be on the cutting edge,” says Terilynn J., CDA.
6. All the Variety
They say that variety is the spice of life, and this applies to dental office life, too. You’re always on the go, anticipating the doctor’s and patient’s needs. In dental assisting, no two patients are alike, and no two workdays are the same. This makes your role exciting and interesting!
“Assistants get to do such a variety of tasks throughout the day,” says Brenda J., CDA, of her favorite aspect of dental assisting. “There’s never a dull moment!”
What’s your favorite thing about dental assisting?