Welcome to What I Wish I Knew by Dental Head Start. This is a podcast where we learn from people that have been there, made the mistakes, learnt the lessons and have developed into the accomplished dental professionals they are today.

It’s your weekly mentoring session.

Hosted by Christina Potestas 

In this episode, I sit down with Rochelle Fisher, the founder of Dental Assisting and Beyond. Rochelle has over 27 years of experience as a dental assistant in the UK and Australia. Now, she dedicates her expertise to empowering dentists and their assistants, focusing on building well-trained, confident, and happy teams within their practices.

Unlike the UK, Australia doesn’t require formal qualifications for dental assistants to do their job. This can lead to situations where assistants lack proper training and struggle to effectively support dentists. Rochelle tackles this gap through her one of her renowned “101 Implant Fundamentals” course, which equips dental teams with the skills needed to align with ADA guidelines during implant and surgical procedures.

Our conversation dives into Rochelle’s career journey, the qualities that define a great dental assistant, potential challenges that can arise when working with assistants, and valuable advice for newly graduated dentists. As someone who has also assisted for a long time, I deeply enjoyed connecting with Rochelle on the intricacies of this profession. I would be oh so lucky working alongside someone like her!

Key moments

00:00 – Introduction and background on Rochelle Fisher’s experience as a dental assistant. 0:02:18 – Rochelle describes her career journey from school into dental assisting.

08:29 – Qualities of a great dental assistant are discussed.

12:47 – How dental assistants can support dentists and improve treatment outcomes.

18:29 – Communication and preparation between dentists and assistants is emphasized.

23:03 – Advice is given on addressing issues if the dentist-assistant relationship is not working.

28:00 – Differences between quality of dental assistants in public vs private settings are explored.

36:49 – Tips are provided for dealing with temp nurses and keeping appointments smooth.

43:31 – Rochelle discusses her current educational work and programs for dental professionals.

Rochelle Fisher

Rochelle began her career in dental assisting 27 years ago after studying at the Leeds Dental Institute in the UK. Since then, she has gained extensive experience working with dentists, consultants, and professors across the globe, from practices in the UK to Australia.

Rochelle has primarily specialized in dental surgical assisting throughout her professional journey. She has coordinated treatment and clinical practices for renowned figures like Larry Benge and Professor Weisenfeld, accumulating significant hands-on experience.

Through her work, Rochelle has gained a deep understanding of what makes a dental practice profitable, compliant, safe for both patients and staff, and ultimately stress-free.

Two years ago, Rochelle established her own training company, Dental Assisting and Beyond. This venture aims to support and educate dental practices in Australia on surgical and implant set-up protocols and techniques. She strongly believes in the “whole team approach,” emphasizing thorough training for all staff members.

Rochelle is passionate about education, training, and best practices within the dental field. Her greatest satisfaction comes from hearing how her training has positively impacted practices, leading to decreased staff turnover, increased client satisfaction, improved morale, and smooth-running implant procedures, showcasing the power of comprehensive, team-oriented training.

Furthermore, Rochelle is a qualified yoga practitioner and offers wellness programs specifically designed for dental professionals. Recognizing the significant stress dental work can place on the body and mind, potentially leading to burnout, poor mental health, and workplace injuries, Rochelle provides workshops and courses to help dental staff manage stress, combat physical strain, and maintain good mental health throughout their careers.

Rochelle’s dedication lies in collaborating with dental practices to ensure all staff feel well-trained, confident, valued, and happy in their work environment.

Get connected with Rochelle online: 

Website: https://www.dentalassisting.com.au/contact-us

Instagram: @dentalassistingandbeyond

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