New South Wales
Dental technicians construct and repair dentures (false teeth) and other dental appliances including crowns, bridges, partial dentures, pre and post oral and maxillofacial surgical devices and orthodontic appliances in a laboratory.
Dental technicians work under the prescription of dentists.
Dental technicians may perform the following tasks:
Make models of the mouth and teeth from impressions of the patient's mouth (taken by the dental prosthetist [clinical dental technician] or dentist);
Build up wax replicas of part of all of the mouth and/or teeth on the model;
Encase the wax in a mould material and melt away the wax;
Replace the wax with either plastic, metal or ceramic materials to make the replacement appliance;
Polish and finish the appliance prior to it being placed in the patient's mouth; and
Make appliances for patients with cleft palates, braces and plates for correcting irregular teeth and mouthguards.
Dental technicians work in dental laboratories on their own or in small groups. They use a wide range of materials and techniques in their work. Dental technicians use a high degree of technical ability, training and skills involving a diversity of techniques. These include plaster casting, electro-spot welding, metal casting, metal polishing, wax modelling, ceramics, wire bending, electroplating and sandblasting.
Dental technicians usually have no direct contact with patients.
Manual dexterity and ability to do precise and detailed work
Able to judge form and design
Able to concentrate
Good communication skills
Dental technicians may work in hospitals or dental laboratories or for dental practices.
Demand for dental technicians who work with dentures appears to be diminishing as the incidence of tooth decay declines. However, demand is growing for dental technicians working in areas, such as crown and bridge, orthodontics and other prosthesis.
In order to work as a dental technician, graduates must, in some States or Territories, be registered with the Dental Technicians Registration Board or the Dental Registration Board of these States or Territories if that is where they intend to work.
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