How To Shadow a Dentist

It is essential to shadow a dentist if you want to have a future in the field of dentistry. This will give you the actual feel and experience necessary for your future work. Just follow these simple steps and you’re sure to shadow a dentist properly.

  • Contact the office. It’s best that you call your preferred clinic days before to set your schedule. Make them know your intention for shadowing and career plans in the field of dentistry. Take time to list possible and willing doctors that will help you with your chosen vocation. Once you clear this out, they will be more than happy to accommodate you.
  • Invest time. Try to set as much time as you need when shadowing a dentist. The longer your exposure in the clinic, the better your shadowing experience will be. See to it that you’ll be available when there is a special procedure to be done. You can politely ask the receptionist in the clinic about the schedule for the said procedures.
  • Be professional. You should be prim and proper during your shadowing experience. Be well groomed and dress accordingly. Inquire if there’s a standard dress code in the clinic—whether to come in with smart-casual attire or just plain scrubs.

    Come on time or 10 to 15 minutes earlier on your scheduled dates of shadowing. This will give them the impression of being dedicated and committed to the course of your training. Remember that you have to earn their respect especially with time management.

  • Take down notes. Nothing beats the same old fashion routine of jotting down important lessons during your shadowing stint. This will definitely outline each of your experiences and actual practical tips in dentistry. You can also politely ask questions regarding any new procedures done in the clinic or clarify things with the dentist after the procedure is done. Remember that taking down notes helps you retain information more than just actually seeing or hearing it.
  • Be assertive. It helps to be proactive during the duration of your training. However, you should know your limitations and boundaries as an apprentice. Be aware of your responsibilities during your shadowing experience and fulfill them diligently. Remember that you are there to learn and not to impress the dentist.
  • Read the situation. Never speak of comments that are inconsiderate for both the patient and the dentist during a procedure. Carefully choose your words when dealing with the patients regarding the procedure done. Learn the art of give and take during conversations. Address the doctor professionally and let him take charge while you follow his lead.
  • Give your regards. You should always show your appreciation to the dentist as well as to each of the personnel in the clinic. This will help you establish rapport and generate a friendly environment that is perfect for apprenticeship. Remember that these bonds will help you to gain your desired career in dentistry.

Now you can shadow a dentist! Be sure to master every knowledge, skills and attitude you’ve learned through this experience. Your career path in dentistry will definitely be more stable than ever!


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