Learn Where and When to Use a Cell Phone in a Dentist’s Office

A dental professional using a cell phone while looking at x-rays

Nowadays, it’s hard to go anywhere and not see more than half of the people around you using a cell phone. While it may be the go-to gadget for calling, texting, and internet-surfing while away from home, it’s important that you be mindful of where and when to use one while working in a dentist’s office. Why? One word…HIPPA. As you will learn in your dental assistant classes, staying in compliance with HIPPA is crucial but so is maintaining professionalism about the workplace. Read on to learn where and when you should use your cell phone and how it can potentially put you in a comprising situation should sensitive information become public.

When to Use a Cell Phone in the Workplace

Depending on your employer, they may or may not prefer that you use your cell phone while at work. While you’re taking lunch or on a break, it may be perfectly acceptable; however, when dealing with patients and preparing files, it may be strongly discouraged. Here are some reasons why it may be beneficial to keep your cell phone nearby while working:

  • If you’re taking a lunch break, it is perfectly acceptable to use it.
  • If an emergency occurs, your employer may be fine with cell phone usage to address the issue.

It is important to remember though that while your boss or colleagues say “downtime” can be used to play on your phone, as a dental assistant, there is usually very little of available time, so even if others are embracing phone usage, opt to stand out from the crowd and spend it taking care of something around the office.

When Not to Use a Cell Phone While at Work

There are instances when you should never pull out your cell phone while at work. Keeping it in a locker, purse, or pocket is fine, but some employers view smartphones and any other type of personal technological device to be:

  • Unprofessional
  • Compromising to a patient’s privacy
  • Inappropriate

HIPPA violations are extremely serious and can be detrimental to a dental or health care practice of any kind. When a cell phone is out and visible, it can lead to a potential violation of a patient’s privacy.

As you continue in your dental assistant training, always heed the advice of your teachers, employer, and colleagues but be mindful of what can be considered unprofessional in the workplace. While a cell phone may be fine to have during your lunch break, it might be best to just keep it tucked away for the duration of your workday.

About Dental Assistant Pro
This 10-week course schedule is a class-based instructional program that uses real-life scenarios and hands-on experience to train the best dental assistants. Dental Assistant Pro is designed to allow students the ability to pursue a new career path while continuing to work full-time jobs. To learn more about us, visit our website or call (614) 942-5291.