The Role of a Dental Assistant and Case Acceptance

a young dental assistant charting while at work

As an aspiring dental assistant, you will discover that when it comes to working with patients, your input and encouragement can make a big difference. Not only will you find that an individual is more apt to listen, but they’ll also be more likely to agree to treatment based on the information you provide. While enrolled in your dental assistant courses, be prepared to discover just how integral your role will be when it comes to case acceptance in your dental office.

What Causes a Person Not to Move Forward with Treatment?

Although there may be an endless number of reasons why an individual might choose to seek dental treatment elsewhere, it is your job as the dental assistant to find out why. If there are steps that can be taken to minimize the potential of it happening again in the future, you need to know so that you can make changes or discuss further with the dentist and other members of the team.

Whether it is money, fear, time, or simple disagreement about treatment, you can take the initiative to offer other solutions, ease anxiety, and provide a greater explanation about their particular procedure.

How a Dental Assistant Can Increase Case Acceptance

Part of dental assisting is having a compassionate and caring approach. Working with patients daily requires building relationships and trust as well as exhibiting patience and a willingness to listen. As a dental assistant, you can be the reliable voice a person hears during an appointment. Oftentimes, individuals assume dentists are not looking out for their best interests. This is where a dental assistant can step into the role of the encouraging and positive face of the practice.

Apart from providing education and information regarding the recommended treatment plan, you will also need to make sure:

  • Patients have the opportunity to ask questions. In return, you will need to provide answers that make sense and are easy for them to understand.
  • An individual’s hesitancy is not viewed negatively. Showing them that you understand will allow a person to feel heard and understood. As a result, they may feel more comfortable agreeing to treatment if you take the time to further explain and try to clear up any confusion.
  • They schedule their next appointment before they leave. Even if they feel unsure about the treatment, it’s best to encourage them to schedule a few weeks out than to leave and hope they will call back.
  • You identify the cause of any fear that is keeping them from wanting to move forward with treatment and offer solutions to help ease anxiety and calm nerves.
  • You provide alternative ways for an individual to pay (i.e., flexible financing), especially if the treatment they’re preparing for will be complex and costly.
  • You explain how to minimize the number of dental appointments by choosing to have more done at one time but that it will likely take longer than if it were broken up into multiple visits.

Dental assistants are pivotal to the success of any dental office. By knowing how to speak, listen, and work with patients, you will discover how rewarding this career choice can truly be.

About Dental Assistant Pro
For more than 25 years, Dental Assistant Pro has been providing aspiring dental assistants with essential knowledge and hands-on skills learning. Our philosophy is the best dental assisting training should be taught in a dental office at an affordable cost, so why not take a chance and enroll in our 10-week course schedule? It’s now more affordable than ever to become a dental assistant! To learn more about us, visit our website.