A GOOD DENTAL NURSE IS ESSENTIAL FOR GOOD PATIENT CARE and here at PMA Dental Care we pride ourselves on our team of highly trained and skilled dental nurses.
A dental nurse’s responsibilities are complex and we thought you might like to know what their day involves. So here they tell you what they do.
Our day starts by turning all the equipment on and making sure we are ready for the day ahead. The sterilisers (autoclaves) are all tested to make sure they are all functioning correctly. The dental chair is set up with cleaned water lines and purified water. We then make sure trays of instruments are set up correctly for the day ahead, checking the list of patients and treatments planned for the day. We also have to check to make sure any dentures, crowns or invisalign work is back and ready for the day’s patients.
As soon as the patient arrives at reception we are notified and then they can be called to the surgery where we try to make them feel comfortable and at ease. We personally get to know our patients as individuals. The patient is settled in, medical histories are checked to make sure we know of any medical problems they may have or any medicines they may be on. Then we are ready for the dentist’s examination.
While one nurse is constantly with the dentist, all nurses ensure that the cleaning and sterilising of the instruments are being kept up to date. Sterilised instruments have to be sealed in special pouches and stored when not needed. Between patients we clean and disinfect all work and touched surfaces in the surgery. All bibs and cups are single-use and are disposed of in the clinical waste bins.
The smooth running of the practice has a lot work behind the scenes. We try to anticipate and keep on time as much as we can. Sometimes things don’t always run on time as patients can be held up in traffic, procedures take longer than anticipated, or even patients come in with different problem to the treatment set up for. Everyday we also allocate emergency slots throughout the day. Patients are our number one priority and if someone comes down with a toothache we try to see them on the day.
All X-Rays and OPG’s are digitally done at the practice which saves time as they do not need developing or filed away in paper cards.
Stocktaking is performed weekly and at the end of each week we order what we need. Christine our head nurse manages the stock electronically and can order online for next day delivery, thus ensuring we never run out of anything (hopefully)!
There are seven dental nurses working here and we all work together as a team and share the work. We handle all aspects of the job from the front desk, answering phones, to assisting the dentist and ordering stock etc. Some of the nurses rotate their shifts so we are able to offer a service from 8.00am to 7.00pm during the week.
These are some insights on a nurse’s perspective of life at PMA Dental Care, Gravesend and I hope you have enjoyed finding out a little of what they do here.
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