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“Patients Understand That We Actually Value Them”

For Dionne Zaspel, the path to becoming a dental assistant was long and winding. But once she got there, she realized how much she enjoyed her new career. And when she was hired in March 2015 at Personal Care Dentistry, she felt blessed that she had found such a great care team to join. The clinic felt that same way, as she is now the Assistant Dental Assisting Team Leader.
 I worked full time as a bar tender for many years, and I really enjoyed the people I met and the hours, but at a certain point I decided that I really needed something else as a career, says Dionne. I initially thought about becoming a nurse and working in a hospital, and I did get a job at St. Joseph’s in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), but I pretty quickly realized that I wasn’t cut out for that field. I considered radiology after that, but eventually settled on becoming a dental assistant because I felt like I could make patients feel happier and more comfortable as a dental assistant. I was so happy I chose that path.
Dionne initially worked part-time at several dental clinics in the White Bear Lake area, but didn’t feel like their approach was a real match for her goals as a dental assistant. She answered an ad for a dental assistant at Personal Care Dentistry and when she came in for the interview she was struck by how beautiful the office was and how comfortable it felt. It didn’t feel sterile like a lot of dental offices, and when I interviewed with Tiffanie (Apple, the Dental Assisting Team Leader), I thought ‘This must be a great place to work’ because she was so happy and upbeat.
Tiffanie was right, says Dionne. This is a really busy office, but it is exactly like I thought it would be when I interviewed here. Everyone is always nice and helpful and I feel like the team I work with dental assistants, dentists, hygienists and the front office staff – are all really sincere about caring for their patients. I work with people who are smart, kind and helpful. It is really fun to be here!
Dionne’s top goal with patients is to educate them and inform them about their care. I really try to help the patient to understand their treatment plan and what we are doing and why. Patients understand that we actually value them.
Dionne lives with her husband Mike and their two dogs and a cat. In her spare time, she loves to cook for her husband Mike and their friends in. I love to feed people, especially Italian food. I can my own tomatoes and make meatballs from scratch and just serve a lot of love in my kitchen. When she isn’t cooking, Dionne loves to fish (I would fish every day if I could retire tomorrow), refinish furniture, and can beets and pickles, make jellies, and put together gift baskets.

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