Becoming an apprentice: A guide into the world of dentistry

Who is an apprentice?

An apprentice is someone who decides to learn a skill or set of skills by undergoing a specific paid period of training. Now that a definition has been established, dental apprenticeship involves learning a skill within the various aspects of dentistry without necessarily obtaining a university degree on a full time basis. Sounds interesting, doesn't it? You can take a glimpse into and explore the world of oral medicine. Starting up as an apprentice enables you learn and earn at the same time and I must let you know that dentistry is both rewarding and lucrative.

  1. You are offered a varied learning experience, that is, you don't have to study books alone. You also have opportunities to learn practically and directly from a professional in a dental clinic.
  2. As earlier said, you learn and earn. It is interesting to know that you can learn and upgrade your skill set and still make money while at it. No tuition, no book fees or any fees whatsoever. Just work, learn and get paid.
  3. It builds your confidence. You are surrounded by professionals who are willing to let you in, on the know, of how to be a good dentist. You also get hands on experience of the profession, hence you don't have to cower or act like a novice when you finally get out there.
  4. Choice- You are exposed to the different aspects of dentistry, so you get to eventually chose the work that suits you and the aspect that you would like to major in.
  5. Being an apprentice gives you ample chance to work towards obtaining a qualification in dentistry if you decide to further as it offers structured trainingprograms that could help you on your way.
Different aspects of dental apprenticeship Dentistry cuts across so many aspects among which are: Dental nursing

As a trainee in dental nursing, you will work directly with the dentist and the patients. You will learn and perform the following duties:

-the use of dental equipment -patient communication skill -how to react in medical emergencies -prevention of diseases -patient care - oral anatomy - personal management and development

Dental laboratory assistant

Here, you work closely with the dental technician who guides you into: (i) learning the basics of producing dental aids such as bridges, dentures, braces and mouth guards (ii) repair of dental aids and equipment (iii) carrying out radiography procedures

Dental technician

This is an upgrade of being a dental laboratory assistant. You take up more senior roles and get more insights into the mechanics and technicalities of dental equipment.

Dental practice manager

This has more to do with human resource management than clinical procedures. In this aspect of dentistry, you will learn skills such as:

-human resource and human management -clinical terms and roles of staff within the dental practice -marketing -finance -risk management -quality assurance

So you see, whatever skill you decide to learn in the world of dentistry, there is always a space for you to fit into and upgrade yourself in oral medicine.