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Dental Assistant

Responsibilities

Procedures a dental assistant may perform are regulated on a province-by-province basis. However, specific tasks dental assistants may perform include:

  • Asking about the patient’s medical history and taking blood pressure and pulse
  • Assisting the dentist during a variety of treatment procedures
  • Assisting with and helping to provide direct patient care in all dental specialties, including orthodontics, pediatric dentistry, periodontics and oral surgery
  • Communicating with patients and suppliers (e.g. scheduling appointments, answering the phone, billing and ordering supplies)
  • Helping patients feel comfortable before, during and after dental treatment
  • Performing office management tasks that often require the use of a computer
  • Providing patients with instructions for oral care following surgery or other dental procedures
  • Serving as an infection control officer, developing infection control protocol and preparing and sterilizing instruments and equipment
  • Taking and developing dental radiographs (X-rays)
  • Taking impressions of patients’ teeth for study casts (models of teeth)
  • Teaching patients appropriate oral hygiene strategies to maintain oral health (e.g. tooth-brushing, flossing and nutritional counseling)

Scope of Practice (PDF)