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Dental assistant

Dental assistants help the dental operator (Dentist or other treating Dental auxiliary) provide more efficient dental treatment. Dental operators can focus more time on providing treatment when assistants oversee the necessary but menial tasks, and by effectively becoming the operator's extra hands.



The limitations to the duties dental assistants can perform is often regulated by the local dental governing body. Increasingly more assistant duties are being made legitimate to allow dental operators to focus more on dental treatment.

Traditional duties

Traditionally, tasks which dental operators require of an assistant include:

  • assisting the dental operator by holding and passing instruments
  • retracting tissues and suctioning to assist better vision of the operating field
  • retrieving, setting up and laying out dental equipment and dental instruments
  • mixing materials
  • sterilizing dental instruments and equipment ie.
  • developing dental radiographs
  • charting for the dental operator

General surgery maintenance is also usually included such as mopping floors, cleaning surfaces and the cabinetry.

Extended duties

Other extended duties, many depending on local dental regulations, can include:

  • dental lab work, such as pouring & trimming models
  • exposing radiographs
  • filing charts
  • appointment scheduling
  • maintaining dental record keeping
  • taking impressions
  • giving post-op instructions
  • making temporary crowns
  • manage patient welfare
  • educate patients on oral health
  • complete procedures started by dentists
  • pack gingival retraction cord for accurate impressions
  • ordering dental supplies for office
  • placing dental sealants
  • rubber-cup prophy for patients

See also

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Dental_assistant". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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