5 Most Important Qualities of a Dental Assistant
We did some research and used our personal knowledge and judgment of what we feel are the 5 most important qualities of a dental assistant. We already know dental assistants are superstars and have too many skills to list but experts at Columbus Academy of Dental Assisting thought they would share what really stands out as necessities to succeed in the field.
Dental Assistants Are Team Players
Being a team player is essential to a smooth operating dental office. This includes working well with others, being friendly and willing to give a helping hand when needed. Being on the clinical team in an office means you are constantly floating around, multitasking and making sure the schedule runs smoothly. Meshing with the team keeps the dentist sane and gives him/her confidence to delegate more tasks to you.
Dental Assistants Show a Willingness to Learn
Every dentist wants a dental assistant who wants to grow within the profession and learn the latest and greatest technology that’s out there. The dental field is constantly changing and evolving and this is not a field where you want to stay old school or be the one that people say “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”. Show ambition, ask if you can take a continuing ed course to expand your knowledge and skills in the profession. Your dentist will be super appreciative!! Also – doing more means more money essentially.
Dental Assistants Have Good Patient Care Skills
Going above and beyond by building rapport with your patients is so important. It keeps them coming back and they truly look forward to seeing you at each visit. Make notes about your patients in their chart so you can ask them about that trip they took since their last visit or their new grandchild that was born. If your patient is cold bring them a blanket. If their neck hurts, get them a pillow. Comfort is key in the dental chair and your dentist will thank you for it later.
Dental Assistants Show Initiative
This one kind of goes along with the willingness to learn. Be motivated and energized. Keep a smile on your face and act engaged when learning something new. If your patient cancels in the schedule, ask what you can do to help others or organize the office. Don’t be lazy. A dentist will send you home if your schedule falls apart but will keep you if you are willing to help in other areas in the office.
Dental Assistants Multitask
Multitasking is an absolute must as a dental assistant. As they say, “you must be thinking 2 steps ahead of the dentist”. Being prepared and having the next instrument ready to go when your dentist needs it keeps your day on schedule so your patients and doctor are happy. Read our blog ‘A Day in The Life of A Dental Assistant’ if you want to see what all a dental assistant truly does. It’s definitely more than sucking spit.