Dentistry offers many career opportunities and avenues, whether it be in the Private sector or National Health Service.
Information about Careers in Dentistry
Jenny – Clinical Lead
I knew from the age of 13 that I wanted to be a dental nurse. After talking to the careers advisor at school I knew that I ideally needed GCSE grade C or above in maths, English and science.
After achieving these grades I was offered a job as a trainee dental nurse at St Annes Dental Clinic in 2000 at the age of 16. I was enrolled onto a dental nursing course straight away.
I attended college one evening a week for 18 months and also worked at the practice 5 days a week to complete my training. I qualified in 2002 as a dental nurse.
Once I was qualified I started to take an interest in the orthodontic side of dental nursing. I was keen to learn about the different types of braces used in orthodontics. I enrolled onto the orthodontic nursing course which involved going to Manchester Dental Hospital one day a month. After a lot of studying, case studies and the final exam, I qualified as an orthodontic nurse in 2004.
Following this, I soon enrolled onto the Radiography course which was two evenings a month. Having this qualification allows dental nurses to take x-rays requested by the dentist. I qualified as a dental radiographer in 2006.
I was happy with my job role and how my career was developing; I was working alongside the orthodontist and taking any x-rays when needed. Part of my orthodontic nursing duties was to give patients oral health advice on how to keep clean and look after their braces; I really enjoyed interacting with the patients and soon discovered that I wanted to learn more about promoting good oral hygiene. I enrolled onto an oral health education course and qualified as an oral health educator in 2008.
By 2011 I had worked at the clinic for 11 years, the practice was growing, and we were becoming bigger and much busier. I decided to do a short course in impression taking, this allowed qualified dental nurses to take simple impressions of patients teeth when requested by the dentist.
In 2012 I became the Clinic Lead at the practice. I work closely with Sarah, the Administrative lead and between us we ensure the clinic runs smoothly, all policies are up to date and staff are trained appropriately.
I work closely with the Orthodontist in surgery, nursing and taking any x-rays or impressions when needed. I also run an oral health education clinic twice a week to give oral health advice to patients.
I am very proud with how my career has developed over the past 13 years. At the age of 16 I did not know that there were so many opportunities and career paths for dental nurses. I thoroughly enjoy my job and I plan to continue furthering my dental nursing career in any way I can.
Emma – Implant Team Lead
When I left school at the age of 16 I still wasn’t sure what I wanted to do as a career. I was already a patient at the practice and decided that a career in healthcare would be interesting. I sent my CV in and was offered a job as a trainee dental nurse.
A soon as I started work here at the clinic I started studying for my dental nurse qualification, I studied 1 night a week at college as well a working 5 days a week for the next 18 months. I qualified as a dental nurse in 2003.
Once I qualified I took a particular interest in dental implant nursing. In 2006 I found myself doing solely implant nursing and more reception duties, at this point I realised that I enjoy doing admin work too. I concentrated more on Implant surgery and the referral side of things.
In 2007 I became pregnant with my first child who was born in 2008. Before I returned to work I enrolled on the radiography course to hopefully gain another post qualification. I studied once a fortnight for 9 months and passed my exam to become a qualified dental radiographer. This now enables me to take dental x-rays of patients when asked by a dentist.
In 2008 it became compulsory for dental nurses to register with the GDC (General Dental Council) so before I returned to work I enrolled on to the GDC register. I also decided that it was best for me and my family if I came back as a part time member of staff to which it was agreed upon I would work 3 days a week this gives me an even work/life balance. In 2010 I had my 2nd child again I returned to work part time.
In 2012 I became Implant Team Lead at the clinic. I am now a senior member of staff responsible for overseeing the dental implant nurses assisting in surgery and stock ordering and rotation. I am responsible for the referrals from other practices to make sure patients get an appointment and correct information gets sent out to the patient. Since starting my new job role I have structured a new log sheet for implants and made sure that it gets copied in to the patient’s notes.
In 2012 I decided I would further my career and study for another post qualification in dental sedation nursing which I have recently passed, this enables me to assist the dentist when nervous patients undergo sedation at the practice. I am really happy with how much I have achieved since leaving school and that becoming a dental nurse is quite a positive career. Hopefully in the future I may undertake another post qualification
Manesh – Dentist
I did my Vocational Training under the Supervision of Mr Hills in 2009. The experience that I gained at St Annes Dental Clinic has helped me to improve my clinical skills and knowledge of dentistry.
The surgery has state of the art modern equipment and materials necessary to advance the basic skills gained at Dental School.
I would thoroughly recommend St Annes Dental Clinic to any newly qualified dentist wishing to complete Vocational training and further their practicing career.