8 Bad Habits That Are Making Your Dental Job Less Enjoyable

by | Dec 11, 2023 | Dental Assistant, Dental Hygienists, Dental Job, Dental Professionals, Work Life | 0 comments

2024 is right around the corner. Have you made your list of resolutions yet? If enjoying your dental job is one of them, these tips will get you on the right track.

I had a career before dentistry, and I can assure you that working in a dental office was probably the only time in my career that I didn’t dread going to work. Instead, I genuinely enjoyed my coworkers, patients, relaxing atmosphere, and free coffee.  I couldn’t believe I could enjoy work so much.  And even though I managed 7 dental practices, every single one was a joy to go to every day.  And the people working with me usually felt the same way. 

And, US News and World Report ranks dental jobs as some of the best jobs in the world.

Now, as a recruiter, when I chat with people who seem like they are miserable in their dental jobs, I have to wonder if these dental assistants, hygienists, front office staff, and sometimes even the dentists have fallen victim to these bad habits that are making them find less enjoyment in their jobs.  

Here are 8 bad habits that are making your dental job less enjoyable.     

#1 Oversharing 

Uh… TMI much… It is very easy to fall into this bad habit with coworkers.  You see them daily and have so much to chat about, but sometimes when you overshare your life, it can make them (and eventually you) uncomfortable and sometimes can cause conflict.  

Here are some items you shouldn’t share at work:

  • Finances
  • Pay rate
  • Political opinions
  • Religion
  • Relationship info (small fun stuff is ok, just don’t over share all the love details or the negative stuff)
  • Negative feelings towards your boss or coworkers.  

#2 Not taking responsibility

One of the biggest complaints I hear from job seekers is that their current coworkers never take responsibility for their actions.  Which, I totally agree, can make work-life miserable.  If you make a mistake, fess up and apologize.  It will make everyone feel better, including you!

#3 Lack of Motivation

Not flipping a room right away or helping to keep the break-room tidy is going to cause you more stress than anything.  So yes, maybe you aren’t feeling motivated to be super helpful today, but be disciplined enough to know that what you don’t finish today gets piled on tomorrow.  Just do it!

#4 Gossiping

This one does fall into oversharing, but gossip is a major workplace issue.  And I am sure we can all agree that the awkwardness that occurs when someone finds out that you were gossiping about them, OR WORSE… the hurt YOU feel when you find out someone was gossiping about YOU, is simply not worth the 5-second joy you get from interacting with your chatty coworker.  

Next time you start to talk about a coworker or patient, just stop and think how it would make you feel if they found out.  Or how you would feel if that person was talking about you.  Simply stick with celebrity gossip and save yourself the embarrassment. 

#5 Not enjoying yourself outside of work

This one has always been my despise.  I am so tired come Friday that I feel I need to spend my whole weekend resting, so I am ready for work come Monday.  


Work to live, not live to work.  Make sure your time away from work is spent doing what you love with the people you love.  This will fill your cup immensely and give you more energy than spending the weekend resting ever could. 

#6 Not sticking to a budget

Outside stress seeps into work very quickly.  While working in dentistry has many benefits and pays more than most jobs, money can still be tight. So make sure you create and stick to a budget.  That will keep one of life’s most significant stressors (money) from being an issue.  

#7 Taking things personally

People always question why I am so happy all the time. Or how I can push through and make stuff happen even on crappy days.  And I have always contributed my success to a short memory.  

I simply cannot remember I have an awful zit on my forehead, much less that mean thing that sad stranger said to me.  

We have to stop taking everything so personally because it really isn’t personal.  Everyone is so stuck in their own heads that if they are rude to you, it is because THEY are having a rough day.  Just remember that your job (and your life) will be so much more enjoyable. 

#8 Staying at a job that is all wrong for you

Lastly, sometimes you have done all the internal work, and your job still sucks.  If you are working in an office environment that just keeps bringing you down, no matter how much you shine, then it is time to take your talents elsewhere.  Head to DirectDental today and find yourself something new!

We will see you there!


Holli Perez

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