VA has the following dentistry careers available:
As valued members of an interdisciplinary health care team, VA dentists work in an environment committed to providing high quality health care to our Nation's Veterans. Because many Veteran patients can be medically, physically, and/or emotionally compromised, unique treatment challenges typically are present for VA dentists and the support staff that works closely with them. These include dental hygienists, dental assistants, and dental laboratory technicians. The advantages of such a comprehensive approach offer unique freedom for the practice of dentistry and contribute towards providing the highest level of quality patient care.
Dental Hygienists, as a vital part of the VA dental team, are licensed professionals who practice with dentists to provide treatment and care of the mouth, teeth, and gums. Their primary clinical responsibilities include: prophylaxis, debridement, scaling and root planing. In addition, dental hygienists acquire dental images to help diagnose problems, and apply fluorides and sealants to help prevent tooth decay. In some states they utilize local anesthesia. Hygienists are the preventive part of the dental team, teaching patients how to prevent dental problems, emphasizing the importance of good nutrition, good oral hygiene, regular dental checkups, smoking cessation and relationship to systemic health. VA dental hygienists work closely with, and under the general direction of, a dentist or periodontist.
Dental Assistants are specially trained health care workers who provide direct clinical and administrative support to the dentist. They support the dentist in all phases of modern dentistry including surgery, restorative and prosthetic rehabilitation. VA Dental Assistants work in an environment committed to providing high quality care to our nation's Veterans. Many Veteran patients are medically, physically, and/or emotionally compromised, therefore, unique treatment challenges are typically present. The Dental Assistant must demonstrate knowledge-based competency in the respective areas of chair side dental assisting, radiation health and safety, and infection control.
Dental Laboratory Technicians are skilled professionals who complete prosthetic prescriptions, submitted by dentists, for the replacement of missing teeth. They fabricate and repair dental and maxillofacial prostheses, i.e. dentures, bridges, crowns, and other forms of artificial tooth replacement. Dental laboratory technicians are knowledgeable concerning dental anatomy, occlusion, and dental materials. They use various types of tools, equipment, and technology — both manual and automatic — to produce each unique prosthesis.