In the state of Oklahoma the four recognized dental assisting expanded duties are as follows:
- Radiation Safety
- Coronal Polishing
- Sealant Placement
- Assisting with Nitrous Oxide Analgesia
Radiation safety allows dental assistants to take routine patient X-rays that are assessed and evaluated by the practice’s resident dentist(s), and it is the only expanded duty dental assistants can obtain with their permit. However, dental assistants cannot be on-the-job-trained for radiation safety; they must take an online or live course through the Oklahoma Dental Foundation (ODF), pass an online certification test, and complete a minimum number of X-rays approved by a supervising dentist. The certification test requires knowledge of:
- Basic principles of X-ray generation
- Equipment orientation
- Imaging sensors
- Image development
- Radiation safety
Dental Depot Academy of Dental Assisting includes radiation safety in its curriculum. While in the program, the Academy will arrange with the ODF for students to take the preparatory online radiation safety course and subsequent exam. Once the course is completed, students will be required to take the certification test at the OSU-OKC testing facilities in Oklahoma City or Tulsa, typically during the fourth week of the program. The course and testing center fees are included in the program tuition.
Students will be notified by the Oklahoma Board of Dentistry if they passed the test, after which they will be required to complete 200 X-rays. As part of the Dental Depot Academy of Dental Assisting curriculum, students will have the opportunity to meet this requirement through the program and earn their radiation safety certification.
Additional Expanded Duties
Though not included in the Dental Depot Academy of Dental Assisting curriculum, three additional expanded duties dental assistants may pursue the other three additional expanded duty certificates after program completion through the Oklahoma Dental Foundation.
To obtain certification in coronal polishing, sealant placement, and/or assisting with nitrous oxide analgesia, dental assistants must have been practicing chairside for at least one year, with the last six months occuring in the same location. The certifications earned at these weekend courses must be kept current and renewed every year.
CPR certification as provided by the American Heart Association/Health Care Provider or the American Red Cross/Professional Rescuer is a prerequisite for a dental assistant with any expanded duty permit. Dental Depot Academy of Dental Assisting students will receive CPR certification as part of the program curriculum, with fees included in the cost of tuition.