Going to the dentist can be a mundane, annoying or downright scary proposition for most people. Unlike going to a general practise doctor for a flu or other ailment, going to the dentist is more of an obligation to check in on the health of our teeth, remedy any issues (like cavities) and book the next check-up.
Unlike regular doctors, dentists are teeth specialists and are dedicated to helping people achieve optimal oral hygiene. To do this they need to go through several stages of professional education and training as well as gain valuable on-the-job experience as a dental hygienist or assistant.
Let’s take a look at the common traits found in the best dentists.
Great manual dexterity
If you think about all the times you were in the dentists’ chair looking up at the ceiling and watching hand manipulate instruments inside your mouth, you would know that dentists need great hand-eye-coordination.
Similar to surgeons who perform high risk procedures in a hospital; dentists need to be careful and very deliberate with their actions as they are working in a very delicate area of the body. In-fact, this is likely why many people develop an irrational fear of dentistry, because they see metal objects being move around in a delicate part of our bodies – our mouths.
Not only do the best dentists need a steady hand and a high attention to detail, they also need to have good stamina. Some dental procedures take longer than others and a dentist will need to stand over a patient for long periods at a time.
Similar to the bedside manner we see in the best doctors, dentists understand the importance of making patients feel comfortable and confident in their authority as a medical expert. As a reaction to how many people claim to be scared of dentistry, modern dentists go out of their way to act chummy with patients and are often pseudo-comedians in a lot of ways.
Dentists also need to work closely with dental hygienists and other support staff in order to run the practise smoothly and deliver the best treatment. Ideally a dentist should be prepared for a lot of interaction with other people, including a lot of unruly children.
Enjoys problem solving
Dentistry is a well-understood practise that has been tested and researched over hundreds of years. Unlike general medicine, the teeth are pretty well understood and a dentist understands the common problem and their corresponding solutions.
Complex dental issues will arise from time to time and the dentists will need to make authoritative judgements and advise patients on how to proceed.