To become a dental nurse, it takes 1 year of dental nurse training which is class-based studies with at least 16 hours per week working at a dental practice. This course involves lots of exams and assignments. I was qualified as a dental nurse in April 2020.

I am very lucky to work as a dental nurse as I enjoy my work. I have been working in dental practice for 3 years now. Being a dental nurse can be a great profession to earn for living.

The practice where I am working has a wonderful team. Staffs in my practice have a positive attitude and we help and support each other. Every staff are talented, responsible and highly motivated to deliver the best dental care in the practice. I make sure that I provide an excellent dental service to the patients working together with a team of other dental care professionals. As a dental nurse, I should assist the dentist with medical procedures and help the patient during the treatment. For many patients, dental practices are known to be a source of anxiety therefore dental nurses should have the ability to provide emotional support to patients and must be able to work well under pressure with a caring attitude.

The practise where I work is NHS Dental Access Centre which consists of 7 surgeries. The practice is situated in a beautiful town. The practice has two receptionists’ staffs who are very lovely to meet and have very pleasant attitudes. It’s obvious that we deal with different types of patients every day. It’s important for a dental nurse to have a caring attitude, listening properly, good understanding and remaining calm while treating patients especially with those patients who are in pain.

My practice has 6 dentists and 2 wonderful therapists/hygienists. Dentists are expert in orthodontics, endodontics, children’s emergencies and extractions. Dentist discusses the treatments with patients very thoroughly and makes treatment plans accordingly that is beneficial for the patients. Our team ensures that patients have clearly understood what is happening and what we are going to provide.

We have 4 qualified Dental Nurses with lots of experience including myself and 4 trainees dental nurses. I had 2 years of experience before joining the practice. We have a Senior Dental Nurse and she works together with the Practice Manager to run the day smoothly and efficiently. The practice has an X-ray room and x-rays proceed digitally.

I work in an NHS Dental practice and everyday work of a Dental nurse is ever-changing because different patient requires different varieties of treatments and procedures. Every morning I attain at dental surgery for work at 9 am sit and have a conversation with my colleagues. I start my work at 9:15 am and make surgery ready for the first patient at 9:30 am.

Roles & Responsibilities of a dental nurse in a workday are listed below

A ‘normal’ workday for a dental nurse will consist of the following core responsibilities:

  • Preparation of different fillings materials
  • Provide support and comfort to the patient during treatment
  • Sterilisation of instruments in the decontamination room
  • Processing of patient’s x-rays correctly
  • Making the dental surgery very tidy and clean
  • Patient’s information should be properly recorded and filled
  • Giving instructions on oral hygiene to the patients
  • Maintaining and carrying out dental stock
  • Handling and sending the lab works correctly
  • Maintaining confidentiality of patient


I wake up at 6:30 am after my alarm goes. I take my breakfast with coffee and get ready for my busy day.

I get my dress and head off for work at 8:30 am.

After I reach work, I greet my colleagues.

Every day, we have our morning nurses meeting “huddle” at 9 am to have a conversation about the day and to resolve any issues of the day.

I enter my surgery at 9:15 am. I switch on the lights of the surgery and get my day list from reception. I wear my PPE correctly and do hand wash. Then, I set my surgery for the day; checking the lab works, preparation of instrument trays, making sure of stocks in the room, flushing the lines, cleaning the surface and getting all of the dental materials out.

I also help the other dental nurses organising the decontamination room to carry out the day’s sterilisation processes and filling various clinical logs.

At 9:30 am, I collect my first patients from the waiting room after I and my dentist are ready for the treatment. There are some emergency sessions also where any patients come with pain and wait to see the Dentists. It is the responsibility of a dental nurse to assist and help to the dentist as much as possible to provide dental treatment during the patient’s appointment time and minimize the waiting time for the patient.

After the morning session, I had made my surgery ready for the afternoon session. Our lunchtime is 1 pm- 2 pm which is a good time to have a conversation with colleagues about the clinical works of the day.

At 2 pm, our afternoon session starts and get ready to see the patients. In – between patients, the Dentist always finishes off the notes of patients. I make sure that the surgery is tidy and well disinfected. I sterilize my instruments and flush the waterlines after every patient. For sterilization of instrument, all the instruments go through proper stages of the cleaning process following cross-contamination and infection control guidelines.

We finish all of the patient appointments by 5 pm. At the end of the day, all the dental nurses close down the surgery room. We dispose of all clinical waste, stock up for the next day, fill the clinical logs, sterilize all the dirty instruments, disinfect the work surfaces, flush the dental lines and turn off the lights and compressors.

We get ready to go home by 6 pm after all of us have finished the work of the day. After work, we have tired feeling but also happy that we have really worked hard to make the day successful.

So in summary, a day in the life of a Dental Nurse is very productive as we get to do amazing work with our dental family. I learned to do multitask, work in a team and to remain calm under pressure by being a dental nurse.