A job as a dental nurse would suit someone who is interested in oral health, has an eye for detail, good organisational skills, and the ability to calm and reassure patients. The work involves assisting the dentist in all aspects of running the surgery, from practical support during treatment to helping out at reception, and as such requires someone with a positive and flexible approach to work. This job also suits someone who has a genuine affinity for people, including children and those with special needs. Experience and qualifications as a dental nurse gives a good grounding for progression into a career as a dental hygienist or a dental practice manager.
Dental Nurse Jobs Education Requirements
There are no formal entry requirements for a beginning a trainee dental nurse position, although some employers will want to see GCSEs in basic subjects such as maths and English, and a science qualification would also be of help. Training to become a fully qualified dental nurse is usually done on the job, with a qualification approved by the General Dental Council. Such qualifications range from a Level 3 Diploma in Dental Nursing to a foundation degree in the same.
Dental Nurse Jobs Market
Although the immediately obviously opportunity for working as a dental nurse is in a dentist's surgery, there are other options available. Qualified nurses can find work in universities, in industry, and in hospitals as well as in general dental practice. The Office for National Statistics reports that there is a 23% skill shortage in this sector, and so employment prospects are fairly good for those with qualifications and/or experience.
Dental Nurse Jobs Salary Information
A trainee dental nurse working for the NHS can expect to begin on £16,500 which can rise to around £22,000 once fully qualified. Salaries in private practice will vary but will be in roughly the same area.