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What Makes A Good Dentist?

1.Good eyesight and colour vision. There is a lot of precision work involved in dentistry.
2.Manual dexterity. Once you’re a practising dentist, you’ll need to be able to confidently work with medical instruments in delicate areas.
3.An interest in and ability to acquire scientific knowledge, particularly about the human anatomy and oral disease.
4.Confidence in offering advice and educating patients about their oral health is a key part of the role.
5.Patience and compassion. Unfortunately, a lot of people are scared of the dentist! It’s your job to convince them there’s nothing to worry about.


dental nurse

•taking responsibility for the decontamination of instruments
•maintaining dental operating equipment
•ensuring that all relevant materials and supplies are in place
•looking after patient records – including making notes when the dentist is examining a patient
•working closely with the dentist, responding quickly to requests and generally keeping the surgery ready for use

You will also be responsible for ensuring high standards of cleanliness and control of infection. With extra training you could take x-rays and clinical photographs, take impressions, make models of teeth and apply fluoride varnish to prevent tooth decay.

You may also help with reception work. Tact and discretion are important qualities for a dental nurse - you will be handling confidential patient information and caring for people who may be anxious.


Dental hygienist

•scaling teeth (at times under local anaesthetic)

•polishing teeth

•applying topical fluoride and fissure sealants

They work in hospitals and in community dental services, but most frequently in general dental practice. Many dental hygienists lead teams of oral health educators.

Your work as a dental hygienist will save teeth by preventing and treating gum disease, helping people get rid of associated problems like bad breath. The dentist will usually advise you and help direct your work, although it's now possible for hygienists and therapists who have extra training to set up their own practices or work independently in a dental practice so they can see patients without them seeing a dentist first.

In the community, you could work with people with a wide range of special or additional needs.

If you are based in a hospital, you will help patients who may have had major surgery or complicated orthodontic treatment or have particular medical conditions. The hospital patients you see may be very ill, apprehensive or unsure after life-changing surgery.


Dental therapist

•intra and extra oral assessment
•scaling and polishing
•applying materials to teeth such as fluoride and fissure sealants
•taking dental radiographs
•providing dental health education on a one-to-one basis or in a group situation
•undertaking routine restorations in both deciduous (previously known as baby teeth) teeth and permanent teeth, on adults and children
•using all materials except pre cast or pinned placements
•extracting deciduous (baby) teeth under local infiltration analgesia

•administering inferior dental nerve block analgesia under the supervision of a dentist
•providing emergency temporary replacement of crowns and fillings
•taking impressions
•treating patients under conscious sedation provided the dentist remains in the surgery throughout the treatment

•are dentally anxious
•are medically compromised
•are physically disabled
•have learning disabilities
•have high levels of untreated decay
•are unable to access regular dental care in the general dental service


Dental technician

As a technician/technologist, much of your work will be done by hand to fine-tune each piece to exact specifications, but you will also work with specialised equipment in the laboratory. Since each patient is unique, no two pieces are the same and absolute precision is essential to make sure the device is comfortable and effective for the patient.
•prosthodontic technicians design and make dentures
•conservation technicians specialise in crown and bridge work
•orthodontic technicians make braces to correct tooth positions
•maxillofacial technicians' work is based in hospital oral surgery, ophthalmic, cancer and burns units, helping to reconstruct the faces of patients damaged by accident or disease


Mental health focus group

- discuss mental health of students
- exam stress
- identity
- frendships/ relationships


NCS ambassadors

opportunity to continue fundraising
child bereavement- Simon says/ rainbow
bake sales, static bike rides movie evening
organisation- schedule around exams and lessons
entrepreneurial opportunities with Barclays bank


First aid

primary survey
secondary survey


Healthcare science day

practice procedures such as extractions, fillings


Work experience

- shadowing a dentist
- booking appointments on reception
- observation in surgery
- I saw crowns and bridges placed amalgam fillings and general checkups
root canal treatment, as well as treating a variety of dental diseases
- During several treatments, particularly in restorative work, the dentist had to persevere and ensure complete accuracy in the cavity preparations, which required intense concentration.
-I learnt that dental nurses play an integral role in the dental team. They interact positively with the patient by reassuring them and providing general chitchat. They implement high levels of cross infection and perform thorough decontamination procedures, as well as offering immediate chair side assistance to the dentist.


Private vs NHS

-At a private practice, I gained an insight into how such dentistry differs from the NHS. The atmosphere appeared much more relaxed. The dental practice established its own prices for the spectrum of dental treatments. More cosmetic treatments were on offer. Patients were much wealthier; they had higher expectations and demands for their treatment. Many had researched their proposed treatments on the internet, and were knowledgeable. As opinions differed, this occasionally resulted in a minor disagreement between certain patients and the dentist. Again, good interpersonal communication skills were shown to be essential.
-xclusively with private practice, I observed endodontic/root canal procedures; consultations for tooth whitening procedures; an implant placement with subsequent suturing; checkups; and cosmetic composite restorations
- Problem solving and differential diagnoses were imperative when coming to a conclusion. I learnt that high levels of smoking and alcohol consumption have a higher causative link to the development of oral cancerous lesions


shadowing and procedures

I was lucky that most of the dentists I shadowed talked me through the treatments they were carrying out. I watched root canal treatments, composite and amalgam restorations, a dentist dealing with trauma to a central incisor, periodontal treatment (root surface debridement) and I also watched dental implants being fitted, in the various stages.


artistry in dentistry

rtistry that was needed in dentistry, whether it be carving a perfect composite restoration, shade matching or painting stain into fissures on porcelain crowns.