Part-time dental assistant

//webapps.dol.gov/elaws/faq/esa/flsa/014.htm) (FLSA) does not spell out the requirements for a full-time or part time employee, leaving the matter to employers.

Occasionally, it is possible to start as a casual or part time dental aide and eventually transition into full time dental assisting. So, if you wish to practice dentistry full time, applying for the next available part time dental assistant jobs nearby, would be a great step towards achieving that dream.

On the other hand, for dentists and dental clinics owners, employing a part-time dental auxiliary or assistant will help you get the experience that your practice needs while still operating within the confines of your budget. Additionally, dentists are almost guaranteed to make better picks from part-timers, who they have had a chance to work with and test out.

How to hire a part time dental assistant

For many dental clinic owners, running a dental practice is quite challenging, especially when it comes to hiring new staff. Picking one dental assistant among thousands of applicants is something very few dental clinic owners struggle with.

So, what precisely should dentists consider when looking to hire a part-time dental assistant?

  • Making a good fit– Before posting a part-time job opening, make sure you create a list of skills you want in that position. To get the most suitable candidates, put some extra effort into the selection process. A dental nurse or assistant determines the first impression your clients make about your clinic and obviously, you would want it to be a positive one. Besides supporting the dentists during operations, a dental aide should have excellent communication and front office skills.
  • Interviewing them– After going through their resumes and interviewing them, you may also wish to ask for their references. Since being a dental assistant position is more involving and intricate than a typical office role, you will need a professional who is up to the task. So, while screening the candidate, consider doing some background checks.

Work as part time dental assistant

The dental aide job description differs depending on the dental clinic, the state where the clinic is based, and the amount of experience and training that the assistants have undergone. That said; if you are aiming to work as a part time dental assistant, here are some general roles you are expected to perform:

  • Assisting the dentist with dental procedures
  • Scheduling patients appointments
  • Keeping the patient relaxed and comfortable before operations
  • Taking X-rays and impressions of patients’ teeth
  • Keeping the patient's mouth dry during procedures
  • Numbing the area the dentist or doctor will be operating on
  • Sterilizing equipment used during dental treatment and operations
  • Keeping track of patients records
  • Ordering office supplies and accepting payments from patients

Making a dental assistant job application

Despite the current demand for dental assistants, you still have to make a job application so that you can get noticed by your preferred right dental office. So, what are the key things you should be aware of when making a dental assistant job application?

  • Your resume– Obviously, to start off, prepare your resume. Outline your professional experiences as well as education levels. Make it short and to the point. Be direct as busy employers rarely read the whole resume especially if it’s lengthy.
  • Desired qualities– Besides having a clinical background and excellent academic qualifications, there are other behavioral requirements that dental practices demand from their potential recruits.
    • Ability to handle dental equipment and tools
    • Team player
    • Good communication skills
    • Time management skills
    • Good listener and compassionate
  • Cover letter– A dental aide cover letter can be your greatest tool in landing an interview. Well, while the cover letter may not secure you a job, it should at the very least get you noticed. The main objective of writing a cover letter is to sell your dental assisting abilities to the employer. Here are the key points which you should consider while crafting a dynamite cover letter.
    • First, tell the employer what position you are applying for
    • Make the employer want to know more about you
    • Show your personality
    • Prove to the employer that you are knowledgeable and capable in matters dental assisting
    • Appropriately coincide the letter with your resume

Where to find dental assistant jobs

  1. The internet is full of job opportunities. Just a simple keyword search “dental assistant jobs nearby” will list of endless possible opportunities. This is particularly effective if you are not aware of any job sites that show dental assistant employment options.
  2. Some colleges offer placement help to fresh dental assistant graduates, thus you can exploit this offer if you really wish to land your first job.
  3. Have you ever come across temporary dental placement agencies? This is another great option especially if you are searching for transitory work. Normally called “temping”, this kind of job arrangement occurs when a dental assistant goes on leave or vocation for a few days and a dentist would need services of a part-time or temporary replacement. The encouraging thing about this work arrangement is that, if the dental clinic sees your potential, the temporary arrangement could turn into a permanent role.
  4. Lastly, you can also land interviews through vacancies posted in classified ads of dental magazines, publications, and newspapers.

Bottom line

A career as a dental assistant is very promising nowadays. Besides the rising demand for dental services, there is not a lot of training required for one to become a dental aide, which means you can start getting paid soon after school. You can opt for a full time or part time position and the hours are usually fairly flexible, which allow opportunities for personal growth and career advancement. Anyone aiming to join this profession should also study the specific requirements for their state so that they can start taking the right steps towards finding employment.


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