Provide an extra pair of hands during oral surgery.
What does an Oral Surgery Assistant do?
As an Oral Surgery Assistant, you help make surgical procedures possible. You work with Oral Surgeons to perform surgeries, including tooth extractions, dental implants, jaw surgery, and gum reshaping.
Keeping an eye on hygiene and cleanliness, as the Oral Surgery Assistant, you prepare surgery areas. You also ensure that the Surgeon has all the necessary supplies, such as dental tools, gauze, and medications. Additionally, when you’re the Oral Surgery Assistant, you keep track of patient information to verify that medical and dental records are accurate, and comply with federal and state regulations.
This job is not for the squeamish, as you will be faced with blood and saliva during procedures. Getting in on the action entails having your hands in the mouths of patients. The Surgeon needs full access to all areas, which may require you to move the patient’s lips or the tongue out of the way. And you complete these duties while also keeping track of medication and intravenous fluids.
Even after all that, your job isn’t done. Responsible health care (yes, oral health is part of health care) is not complete until post-operative information is given. Preparing prescriptions, reading dental radiographs (x-rays), and maintaining inventory of surgical supplies all fall within your purview as well.
In small oral surgery practices, you may answer telephones and schedule appointments when you’re not assisting with surgery. The work is demanding at times, but the personal reward of helping people, and even improving lives, outweighs the stress.