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Dental Assistants
Dental Assistants
Dental Assisting Certification Pathway
There are multiple ways for obtaining dental assisting certification for the state of Oregon and it can be a confusing to figure out which way is easiest for you. Below is a link to an easy to read chart explaining the possible pathways to certification.
 
Pathways to Oregon Assisting Certifications 
 

Dental Assistants work chairside with the dentist, in the business office and in the dental laboratory. Duties may include:
  • Instrument and operatory infection control
  • Preparation of instrument trays
  • Instructing patients on proper oral hygiene and post-treatment care
  • Maintenance of dental practice records and supplies
  • Processing of x-rays if the assistant is certified to do so, and
  • Scheduling appointments
In Oregon, Dental Assistants are not licensed but must be certified in order to take x-rays or to perform certain Expanded Functions. The rules regarding dental assisting are found in Oregon Administrative Rules, Chapter 818, Division 42

 
X-Ray and Expanded Function...
X-Ray and Expanded Function Certification
In order to take x-rays, perform general expanded functions (EFDA), or perform expanded orthodontic functions (EFODA), dental assistants in Oregon must first be certified in those procedures. The certification process is performed by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB). Phone: 800-FOR-DANB or www.danb.org.

 
Certification by Credential
Dental Assistants who have been certified in other states to perform expanded functions or to take x-rays, and have at least 1,000 hours of work experience in the past two years performing these functions may qualify for certification by credential. Contact the Board´s Licensing and Examination Manager, at Teresa.Haynes@state.or.us for information.

 
Expanded Function...
Expanded Function Dental Assistants (EFDA)
The following duties are considered Expanded Function Duties and may be performed only after the dental assistant complies with the requirements of 818-042-0080:
 
(1) Polish the coronal surfaces of teeth with a brush or rubber cup as part of oral prophylaxis to remove stains if a licensed dentist or dental hygienist has determined the teeth are free of calculus;
 
(2) Remove temporary crowns for final cementation and clean teeth for final cementation;
 
(3) Preliminarily fit crowns to check contacts or to adjust occlusion outside the mouth;
 
(4) Place temporary restorative material (i.e., zinc oxide eugenol based material) in teeth providing that the patient is checked by a dentist before and after the procedure is performed;
 
(5) Place and remove matrix retainers for alloy and composite restorations;
 
(6) Polish amalgam restorations with a slow speed handpiece;
 
(7) Remove excess supragingival cement from crowns, bridges, bands or brackets with hand instruments providing that the patient is checked by a dentist after the procedure is performed;
 
(8) Fabricate temporary crowns, and temporarily cement the temporary crown after it has been approved by the dentist. The cemented crown must be examined and approved by the dentist prior to the patient being released;
 
(9) Under general supervision, when the dentist is not available and the patient is in discomfort, an EFDA may recement a temporary crown or recement a permanent crown with temporary cement for a patient of record providing that the patient is rescheduled for follow-up care by a licensed dentist as soon as is reasonably appropriate; and
 
(10) Perfrom all aspects of teeth whitening procedures.

 
Additional Functions of EFDA
Additional Functions of Expanded Function Assistants
Dental Assistants who hold a valid EFDA certificate may also obtain certification to allow the assistant to place sealants or apply temporary soft relines to full dentures.
 
In order to perform either of these additional expanded duties, an EFDA must first successfully complete a course of instruction in a program accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association, or other course of instruction approved by the Board.
 
A certified Expanded Function Dental Assistant with this additional training may apply pit and fissure sealants under the indirect supervision of a dentist providing the patient is examined before the sealants are placed. The sealants must be placed within 45 days of the procedure being authorized by a dentist and the sealants must be checked by a dentist prior to the patient’s dismissal.

 
Expanded Functions...
Expanded Functions -- Orthodontic Assistant (EFODA)
(1) A dentist may authorize an expanded function orthodontic assistant to perform the following functions provided that the dentist checks the patient before and after the functions are performed:
(a) Remove cement from cemented bands or brackets using an ultrasonic or hand scaler, or a slow speed hand piece; and
(b) Recement loose orthodontic bands.
(2) Under general supervision, an expanded function orthodontic assistant may remove any portion of an orthodontic appliance causing a patient discomfort and in the process may replace ligatures and/or separators if the dentist is not available providing that the patient is rescheduled for follow-up care by a licensed dentist as soon as is reasonably appropriate.
 
(3) Under general supervision, an EFODA may recement orthodontic bands if the dentist is not available and the patient is in discomfort, providing that the patient is rescheduled for follow-up care by a licensed dentist as soon as is reasonably appropriate.

 
PROHIBITED ACTS
No licensee may authorize any dental assistant to perform the following acts:
(1) Diagnose or plan treatment.
 
(2) Cut hard or soft tissue.
 
(3) Any Expanded Function duty (818-042-0070 and 818-042-0090) or Expanded Orthodontic Function duty (818-042-0100) without holding the appropriate certification.
 
(4) Correct or attempt to correct the malposition or malocclusion of teeth or take any action related to the movement of teeth except as provided by OAR 818-042-0100.
 
(5) Adjust or attempt to adjust any orthodontic wire, fixed or removable appliance or other structure while it is in the patient’s mouth.
 
(6) Administer or dispense any drug except fluoride, topical anesthetic, desensitizing agents or drugs administered persuant to OAR 818-026-0060(1), OAR 818-026-0070(11) and as provided in 818-042-0070 and 818-042-0115.
 
(7) Prescribe any drug.
 
(8) Place periodontal packs.
 
(9) Start nitrous oxide.
 
(10) Remove stains or deposits except as provided in OAR 818-042-0070.
 
(11) Use ultrasonic equipment intra-orally except as provided in OAR 818-042-0100.
 
(12) Use a high-speed handpiece or any device that is operated by a high-speed handpiece intra-orally.
 
(13) Use lasers, except laser-curing lights.
 
(14) Use air abrasion or air polishing.
 
(15) Remove teeth or parts of tooth structure.
 
(16) Cement or bond any fixed prosthetic or orthodontic appliance including bands, brackets, retainers, tooth moving devices, or orthopedic appliances except as provided in 818-042-0100.
 
(17) Condense and carve permanent restorative material.
 
(18) Place any type of cord subgingivally.
 
(19) Take jaw registrations or oral impressions for supplying artificial teeth as substitutes for natural teeth, except diagnostic or opposing models or for the fabrication of temporary or provisional restorations or appliances.
 
(20) Apply denture relines except as provided in OAR 818-042-0090(2)
 
(21) Expose radiographs without holding a current Certificate of Radiologic Proficiency issued by the Board (818-042-0050 and 818-042-0060) except while taking a course of instruction approved by the Oregon Department of Human Services, Oregon Public Health Division, adn Radiation Protection Services (RPS), or the Oregon Board of Dentistry.
 
(22) Use the behavior management techniques known as Hand Over Mouth (HOM) or Hand Over Mouth Airway Restriction (HOMAR) on any patient.
 
(23) Perform periodontal probing
 
(24) Any act in violation of Board statute or rules.