June 19, 2013

Does A Great Smile Equal A Great Job?

Many people may consider the cosmetics of their smile to be unimportant compared to their dental health, and we certainly can understand that way of thinking.  However, the appearance of your smile and the health of your smile are usually quite connected.  Life demonstrates that cosmetics are a lot more important than one may think.

Of course, first and foremost, you want to have healthy teeth and gums.  Proper daily dental hygiene of brushing and flossing is the first line of defense against dental problems.  Next, visiting the dentist regularly, according to a health maintenance schedule that is appropriate to your personal dental health needs is necessary.  Once you are on this right track, take the time to look at the appearance of your smile.   What do people really see when you smile?  How does your smile make people feel?  Do you hold back from smiling?

The answers to these questions are really interesting when considering what a potential employer sees or is reacting to.  We all know, even if we don’t consciously think about it, that there are stereotypic impressions made by different kinds of smiles.  Unfortunately the appearance of your teeth can connote stupidity or low socioeconomic status.  It isn’t nice and it isn’t fair, but it is a harsh reality of this world. Research has shown that when people are offered dental care, it increases their chances of employment.  

The most obvious deterrent to an employer hiring you would be missing teeth that can be seen when you speak or smile.  You can understand that especially if your position would involve contact with the public, such jobs are not going to be possibiities for you.  An employer cannot take a chance that your image will translate over to the image of the company.  Especially positions of service such as reception, cashier, sales, would be off the table for you most likely, if you are missing some or all of your front teeth.

Crowding of teeth and a smile with stains or blackened decay pose additional problems.  Bad breath from gum disease and obviously dirty teeth can be a deterrent to employment as well.

There is a terrible vicious cycle happening in our country where many people find themselves unemployed for extended periods of time.  Once dental problems such as those discussed in this post appear, the cycle of unemployment is difficult to break.

Good daily prevention can help prevent this cycle, but sometimes that is not enough without professional dental care.  Whether you are unemployed or have no dental coverage of any kind, remember that visiting the dentist even once a year is not a big expense (payment plans can usually be arranged – especially if you have had a good working relationship with a dentist before you came on hard times).  Staying away from the dentist when resources are low or depleted actually will cost you more in the long run – more time and more money to restore the damage, as well as dfifficulty getting employment.
For information about other dental topics visit www.TavorminaDentistry.com

June 12, 2013

What Is A Dental Hygienist?

Many people frequently are confused by the difference between a dental assistant and a dental hygienist.  There is a difference.  Each position serves a different function in a dental team.  Being a dental assistant should not be confused with being a dental hygienist.

A dental hygienist is the position of the person, other than the dentist, who you visit to have your teeth cleaned.  A career as a dental hygienist carries its own set of requirements and regulations, including an education of at least two years and as much as six years.  Sometimes people who are interested in dental hygiene will start their careers in dentistry as a dental assistant to gain experience and earn some money before furthering their education.

Along with the dentist, this licensed healthcare professsional provides preventative oral care. Dental hygienists clean patients' teeth and examine them for signs of disease and damage. They teach patients how to maintain good oral health. Their scope of practice—what services they are legally allowed to deliver—differs according to the rules of the state in which they are licensed.

On a typical day in addition to cleaning teeth to remove hard and soft deposits on teeth, the dental hygienist will take and develop x-rays, keep the patient's records in order recording the dental care provided, teach patients how to take care of their teeth, prepare diagnostic tests for the dentist to administer, and apply sealants and fluoride to patients' teeth.

For information about other dental topics visit DrTav.com

June 5, 2013

What Is A Dental Assistant?

A dental assistant is like the dentist’s nurse.  A dental assistant prepares the treatment room for the patient with all the instruments and supplies necessary for performing the scheduled appointment.  Part of that preparation includes the prior sterilization and organization of instruments and supplies.

Many dental assistants are involved in the monitoring of the office inventory and are responsible for ordering supplies.  Dental assistants may also do some simple clerical duties like answering the phone, scheduling patients, doing transactions, handling insurance, and educating patients.  The degree of a dental assistant’s involvement with these tasks depends on the number of staff in the office.

Once a treatment room is set up for the patient, the patient is greeted by the dental assistant and seated in the dental chair.  A bib is placed on the patient before the doctor and dental assistant proceed to provide a dental service.  It is most important that a dental assistant serve as a compassionate support to the patient and an efficient helper to the dentist. 

Dental assistants need to know dental procedures well and the dentist’s routine so that they can anticipate what the dentist needs as the procedure progresses.  Dental assistants suction water and help keep patients safe during dental procedures.  They prepare cements and medicaments needed for crowns, root canal therapy, and fillings, and mix materials for dental impressions.  They prepare custom trays for impressions and do other labwork that's for providing dental care.

Dental assistants update patient files and paperwork, filling in information in the patient’s chart after dental procedures.  The dental assistant helps the patient feel comfortable throughout the procedure and at completion of the procedure, assisting with the patient rinsing their mouth and being dismissed for any rescheduling and payment.  Dental assistants take and mount x-rays for the dentist to evaluate for diagnosis.

In NJ there are four different levels of dental assisting based on the credentials the dental assistant has earned.  A dental x-ray license is required in NJ in order for a dental assistant to take x-rays.  A high school diploma or GED is all that is usually needed to get started in this career.

At Tavormina Dentistry we are presently looking to hire a dental assistant with a dental license.  Call 973-761-5090 if you are interested in providing dental care beyond compare.