At Illinois Dental Careers, students often ask us about dental assistant duties and responsibilities. They want to know what a dental assistant does because it is really important to know the job description before you can start a career in that particular field. If you have already started, it will help you understand your role in a dental or orthodontic clinic.
Dental assistants increase the efficiency of a dentist in providing quality oral health care. They are valuable members of the dental care team. If you have strong communication skills, enjoy working with your hands and mind, and want a career with responsibility, becoming a dental assistant is a great choice. Do you ask yourself“what does a dental assistant do”? Read on to get the answer to that question.
What Does a Dental Assistant Do?
Dental assistant duties are among the most comprehensive and varied in the dental office. A dental assistant performs different tasks requiring both interpersonal and technical skills. Although state regulations vary, some of general responsibilities of a dental assistant may include:
- Assisting the dentist during different treatment procedures.
- Taking and developing x-rays and impressions of patients’ teeth.
- Taking patient’s medical history, blood pressure and pulse, maintaining infection control protocol and preparing and sterilizing instruments and equipment.
- Helping patients feel comfortable and providing them with instructions for oral care and teaching them appropriate oral hygiene strategies.
- Performing office various administrative tasks such as scheduling appointments, answering the telephone, billing and ordering supplies.
Dental Assistant Duties in Illinois
Dental assistants in Illinois perform basic supportive dental procedures under the supervision of a licensed dentist. There are no education or training requirements for an entry level dental assistant.
In Illinois there aren’t any radiography requirements for dental assistants. They all can legally operate dental x-ray equipment and perform dental radiographic procedures. In Illinois a Dental Assistant can be Qualified in Expanded Functions. A dental assistant must meet state requirements for the desired expanded functions to perform expanded functions under the supervision of a licensed dentist in Illinois.