Thursday, 25 April 2013

To be or not to be… a dental nurse?

“I told my dentist my teeth are going yellow. He told me to wear a brown tie!” If you heard about people with similar experiences, you may have a way of helping them. I haven't thought about dental nursing until one of my friends asked me to translate a research paper, so she could use it for one of her presentations. Although, I knew almost nothing about it, it caught my attention that dental nursing is becoming more and more popular. So I looked into the matter a little bit more and figured that it would be interesting to write about it. In case you are one of those people, fresh out of school, who wants to become a dental nurse, here are some key factors, that you should take into consideration before actually choosing this career. If you are not, you could still continue reading, since I think these factors can be applied to many other jobs as well. You may stumble upon something good :)

Image taken from CartoonStock

Willingness = training and development

If you really consider dental nursing your dream job, you should try to be the best at it. No academic qualifications are required in order to get hired as a trainee dental nurse. However, if you want to progress you will have to complete a full-time course approved by the General Dental Council. If your future boss sees that you are reliable, trustworthy, and especially willing to learn more, he/she will help you develop your knowledge and skills by attending one of the special training programmes available. Naturally, you could also take matters in your own hands, and find out more about the opportunities that you have, because there are a lot of ways to advance in this career. In case everything goes well, you can even become a dental hygienist or a dental therapist.

You smile = the patient smiles 

You should know that even if you successfully complete a course, this qualification is not enough to become an excellent dental nurse. Your knowledge or experience will not necessarily be sufficient to make other people smile more often. This is essential! You need to put the patients' interests first and be motivated to help them. It is always hard to work with people, regardless of the environment you work in, so be prepared to have some really annoying patients, with a lot of silly questions, to which you should be answering kindly with the biggest smile on your face! This way they will have nothing to complain about and you will not only “be the bigger man”, but also earn some extra points for your boss and your team.

Team player = everybody likes you, stress free job

At any kind of job, you are usually required to work well in a team. Being a dental nurse is no different! If you are a lone wolf, and refuse to be a part of the team, you will not last long as a dental nurse. At a good dental practice, the team is essential. Since you want to become successful in what you do, it is very important to exclude as many stress sources as possible. Therefore, at first you should do what you are told (even if you do not like it) so you blend in, and get along with the others. Of course after a while, if they see that you are a valuable part of the team, you will be “allowed” to have opinions and they will look forward to your suggestions.

Research = do you like the things you would have to do?

The tasks of a dental nurse are not as easy as they might seem at first sight. This is a crucial matter because if you do not like what you have to do, you will be miserable, and so will be the ones who surround you. Hence you have to really consider all aspects of dental nursing before you make a decision. But if you think you are up for it, dental nursing can be the perfect choice for you!
I have found a pretty good site with a lot of job offers. Here you can check it out if you want to. I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on dental nursing :) Till next time!

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