What are the Responsibilities of a Dentist?

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At 3Rivers Dental, we care for adults and also offer dentistry for kids Kennewick, but our job is about much more than examining, cleaning, and treating the teeth. A dentist’s role is multi-faceted and includes many different responsibilities. Examples include:

  • Providing patient education on proper oral health care
  • Providing patient education about disease prevention
  • Monitoring children and youth for developmental oral health complications
  • Inspecting the teeth for signs of decay
  • Inspecting the gums for signs of periodontal disease
  • Inspecting the mouth for signs of health complications
  • Utilizing diagnostic technology, such as x-rays and digital imaging
  • Developing comprehensive treatment plans to restore oral health
  • Safely administering anesthetic medication
  • Performing surgical procedures on the hard and soft tissues of the mouth
  • Staying aware of the latest changes in dental care methods and technology

It is important to note that a dentist’s realm of care often goes beyond the mouth. Sometimes a dentist will find symptoms that indicate the presence of an underlying health problem. This may lead to diagnostic testing for chronic or infectious disease, or biopsies and screenings for oral cancers. In some cases, a dentist may refer a patient to a medical or dental specialist for further assessment or treatment.

Staffing Management

In addition to providing meticulous professional care, dentists are also responsible for overseeing the clinical team. These individuals are essential to the success of a dental practice and the quality of care patients receive during a visit. Dentists assure the clinical team is using safe practices and implementing procedures to reduce the risk of complications. In small practices, dentists often oversee office operations, as well. This may include hands-on oversight of the administrative staff or the hiring of an office manager who can carry-out these responsibilities instead.