Dental assistant interview questions might sound like they’d be overly cut and dry if you haven’t done such an interview before. However, because dental assistants do more varied tasks than you possibly ever knew, the questions you’re typically asked are sometimes quite complex. Being on your toes with answers is still essential because you have to prove various things before being taken seriously.
As you might guess, this encompasses the realm of experience, your objectives, plus answering various curve ball questions requiring deeper thinking about prospective situations in your job.
Because dental assistants work with people considerably, you should demonstrate your personality at the interview as proof you can make people feel better.
Questions About Experience
While it’s a given questions about experience get asked in any job, the questions for a dental assistant position have more variance. Because dental assistants work in three different parts of a dentist’s office, experience has to extend further. The three most common places you’ll work is next to the dentist while working on patients, in the lab for cleaning dentistry tools or dental devices, plus directly in the office to manage calls and files.
For each category, experience is a must, even if you volunteered your time after getting out of college.
You’ll generally receive a first question asking what qualifies you for the job of a dental assistant. You should answer by listing the duties you’ve performed elsewhere, including particular strengths of character or skills you brought.
The above is usually followed up by asking what your experience is working with dentists and patients. The interviewer will probably ask you what some of those experiences were like and how you handled them. This includes working with children since they’re the most apt to experience anxiety in the dental chair.
When you answer the above, demonstrate exactly what you’ve done in alleviating stress in patients since you’re the first person they see in the dental chair. Especially if you have a knack with calming children, this proof of personality and communication ability goes a long way in making you a perfect candidate.
You’ll be asked other questions detailing what your experience is in the realm of lab work and managing an office. Tell about any experience you have making dental casts or crowns, including retainers and braces. Let the interviewer know since all dental offices want someone with comprehensive knowledge in lab work.
Also bring up any experience doing sterilization work on dental equipment, plus proof you’ve worked with sterilization equipment. Many of these machines need maintaining on their own, so any experience there should get a mention.
If you’ve worked with x-ray equipment, give special attention to it. This is one of the common tasks you’ll do as a dental assistant and one of the few procedures you’ll do directly on a patient.
Then, mention any office experience you have. Managing an office takes special skill, so bring up how organized you were and how you made things run more efficiently with your abilities.
Curve Ball Questions
Many interviewers will try to throw you curve ball questions to see how you answer on the spot. Many of these relate to how you’d handle an emergency, or what your opinion is of certain roles in this career.
A sample question from the above could be along the lines of how calmly you’d handle an emergency. If you have any experience with this scenario, make it clear how you handled it without mistakes. Staying sharp in hectic situations is mandatory in dental assistant jobs since every patient is different.
Keep in mind you’ll likely be asked what you think the role of a dental assistant is. The best answer is keeping patients calm at all times. Make it clear it’s always about the patients and assuring a pleasant experience rather than a chaotic one.
Contact us here at Dental Assistant to find out more about dental assistant interview questions and the surprising questions you may get.