Foundations of a Good DA

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The Dental Assistant (DA) often is the foundation of any good dental practice. The DA often is the first person a patient sees when he or she enters the office’s reception area. And, the DA is the last person the patient sees on his or her way out the door. The Dental Assistant serves in administrative roles, greeting patients as they enter and organizing their movement to and from the treatment area. They also assist dentists in clinical tasks such as suctioning fluids during treatments.

The Dental Assistant does a bit of everything.

At Concorde, we train our Dental Assistant students in a wide variety of skills and disciplines so that they will be fully prepared for any tasks they might take on at the job. But what are the foundations of a good Dental Assistant? We thought we’d seek the input of a couple of our Concorde Dental Assistant program directors for their takes.

Foundations of a good Dental Assistant

Kamika Jackson, Dental Assistant Program Director at Concorde’s campus in Orlando, Fla., listed a set of qualities that range from personality traits to being a good team player.

  • People person – DAs deal with a lot of different personality types and cultures. “We must be able and willing to embrace people and diversity,” Jackson said.
  • Strong willed – Dentists expect a lot. “It’s important to understand the difference between an insult and constructive criticism,” she said.
  • Self-starter – DAs must be able and willing to take initiative without being hand-held on a regular basis.
  • Kind – Patients look to DAs for comfort and dentists depend on that.
  • Patient – Needed to maintain calm environment.
  • Team player – DAs work with several people and must work together to get through challenges.
  • Detail oriented – Dentists depend on DAs to lead them and keep them organized. Attention to detail is vital.
  • Reliable – The DA that shows up and does the job efficiently is priceless for a dentist.
  • Presentable – The DA represents the practice, dentist and the health care profession. How he or she looks and carries his or herself speaks volumes to patients.
  • Professional – Know how to react and conduct themselves maintains a professional and safe environment for patients and other team members.

Basic traits of a good Dental Assistant

Alphia Parker, Dental Assistant Program Director at Concorde’s campus in Miramar, Fla., said the basic traits of a good DA includes great communication skills, enthusiasm, patience, hardworking and attention to detail.

A great skill to have, she said, is good manual dexterity as DAs often fabricate temporary crowns or engage in light repair work.

“Personality-wise, they need to be a good care giver, patient, kind, helpful, a great listener, bubbly, caring, perseverance, motivated, a go-getter and a team player,” Parker said.

If you’re looking for accredited Dental Assistant schools, look no further than Concorde. Our real-world, hands-on training can prepare you for a rewarding career quickly and effectively.

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