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Dental Assisting National Board, Inc.

Measuring Dental Assisting Excellence

General Chairside Assisting (GC)


Exam Blueprint and Suggested References
for Exam Preparation
DANBS GC exam is a component of the DANB Certified Dental Assistant (CDA)
certification.

CDA component exams


General Chairside Assisting (GC)
Radiation Health and Safety (RHS)
Infection Control (ICE)

Note that each states dental board implements regulations and establishes rules for delegating
legally allowable duties to dental assistants. Passing one or more of the DANB component exams
or earning DANB certification only conveys authority to perform these duties in those states that
recognize these exams or this certification as meeting state dental assisting requirements. This
information is at www.danb.org/Meet-State-Requirements.aspx.
2015 Dental Assisting National Board, Inc. (DANB). Permission is granted to individuals to photocopy this document or transmit it
by electronic mail in its entirety, without alteration, for noncommercial use in government and educational settings. All other rights
reserved.

General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES


2015 Dental Assisting National Board, Inc. Effective 01/01/2015

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Dental Assisting National Board, Inc.


Measuring Dental Assisting Excellence

General Chairside Assisting (GC) Exam Blueprint


(10%)

I.

(45%)

II. CHAIRSIDE DENTAL PROCEDURES


Four-Handed Dentistry Techniques
1. Describe how to prepare the treatment room for a patient.
2. Describe how to prepare appropriate treatment trays with armamentarium in
sequence of use and delivery position.
3. Describe how to seat and prepare a patient, including how to position and adjust
equipment.
4. Describe how to implement four-handed dentistry concepts in all treatment
procedures, including but not limited to:
access and visibility for treatment procedures.
correct positioning for prescribed dental treatment.

COLLECTION AND RECORDING OF CLINICAL DATA


Demonstrate an understanding of basic oral and dental anatomy, physiology and
development, including but not limited to:
1. blood vessels.
2. bones.
3. glands/lymphatics.
4. muscles.
5. nerves.
6. oral cavity.
7. teeth.
Preliminary Physical Examination
1. Describe how to record the purpose of patients visit and/or chief complaint.
2. Describe how to assess patients general physical condition (e.g., skin, gait) and
any abnormal characteristics (e.g., evidence of eating disorders, substance
abuse or physical abuse, age-related changes).
3. Demonstrate an understanding of how to take, record, observe and measure vital
signs.
4. Demonstrate how to recognize and describe any abnormal findings in the head
and neck region.
Charting
1. Identify the permanent and primary teeth according to the Universal numbering
system.
2. Identify the surfaces of the tooth.
3. Describe how to chart conditions in the patients oral cavity and how to accurately
transcribe the record.
Diagnostic Aids
1. Describe how to prepare for and assist with the collection of diagnostic data.
2. Describe how to take impressions and pour models for diagnostic study casts.
Treatment Documentation
1. Describe how to record treatment and prescriptions (e.g., medication,
instructions) on patients chart.
2. Describe how to record recommended treatment and patients acceptance or
refusal of recommended treatment.
3. Describe how to record patients compliance.

General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES


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instrument transfers.
Select and Prepare Armamentarium
1. Select and describe how to prepare and/or modify impression trays for
appropriate uses.
2. Select and describe how to prepare tray setups and all necessary armamentaria
for chairside dentistry and dental emergency procedures, including but not limited
to:
amalgam restorations.
anesthetics.
bleaching.
composite restorations.
crown and bridge preparation/cementation.
dental dam application.
desensitization of the teeth.
endodontic therapy.
extractions.
fluoride application.
immediate dentures.
impactions.
implants.
incision and drainage.
initial/secondary impressions.
interceptive orthodontics.
occlusal equilibration/adjustment.
oral examination.
oral prophylaxis.
periodontal procedures.
periodontal surgical dressing placement/removal.
removable partial or full dentures.
root planing and curettage.
rotary instruments.
sealant application.
stainless steel crown placement/removal.
suture placement/removal.
temporary cementation.
temporary restoration.
treatment of dry socket.
Describe how to perform and/or assist with intraoral procedures, including but not
limited to:
1. maintain field of operation during dental procedures (e.g., through the use of
retraction, suction, irrigation, drying).
2. place and remove cotton rolls.
3. assist with and/or polish teeth.
4. assist with and/or apply topical fluoride.
5. assist with and/or perform a vitality test.
6. assist with and/or control minor bleeding after any surgical procedure.
7. assist with, place and/or remove temporary cement.
8. assist with and/or remove excess cement from the coronal surfaces of teeth,
restorations and appliances.
9. assist with and/or apply and remove the dental dam.
10. prepare, assist with, and/or apply and remove matrix bands.
11. assist with and/or apply topical anesthetic to site of injection.
12. assist with and/or monitor the administration of nitrous oxide/oxygen analgesia.
13. identify and change rotary instruments in dental handpieces.
General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES
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14. use the concepts of four-handed dentistry to describe how to assist with general
dentistry and dental emergency procedures, including but not limited to:
administration of anesthetics.
cavity preparation and restoration.
crown and bridge restoration, preparation, temporization and cementation.
desensitization of the teeth.
endodontic therapy.
fabrication of removable partial or full dentures.
fluoride application.
implants.
occlusal equilibration/adjustment.
occlusal registration.
oral examination and data collection.
oral prophylaxis.
oral surgery.
periodontal procedures.
placement of sealants.
placement of stainless steel crowns.
post-operative treatment and complications.
suture placement and removal.
taking initial/secondary impressions.
Patient Management
1. Demonstrate understanding of how to calm and reassure apprehensive patients.
2. Describe how to manage patients, including patients with special needs, during
routine clinical procedures.
3. Describe how to monitor and record patients response to drugs/medications.
(9%)

III. CHAIRSIDE DENTAL MATERIALS (PREPARATION, MANIPULATION,


APPLICATION)
Impression
1. Describe how to prepare, mix, deliver and store the following materials for
impressions:
alginate (e.g., irreversible hydrocolloid).
elastomerics.
waxes.
Restorative
1. Describe how to prepare, mix, deliver and store restorative materials, including
but not limited to:
amalgam.
cements.
composites.
dentin bonding materials.
glass ionomers.
temporary restorative materials.
varnishes, bases and liners.
2. Prepare and/or seat temporary crowns.
Sedative/Palliative
1. Describe how to prepare, mix and store sedative/palliative materials, including
but not limited to:
periodontal surgical dressings.
post-extraction dressings.
sedative dressings.
Other Dental Materials

General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES


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1. Select and describe how to manipulate the various finishing, polishing and
cleaning agents.
2. Describe how to prepare, mix, deliver and store other dental materials, including
but not limited to:
bleaching agents.
bonding agents.
endodontic materials.
etchants.
pit and fissure sealants.
(4%)

IV. LABORATORY MATERIALS AND PROCEDURES


Select and describe how to manipulate and store materials, including but not limited
to:
1. acrylic products or acrylic substitutes.
2. dental waxes.
3. gypsum products.
Demonstrate an understanding of laboratory procedures, including but not limited to:
1. fabricate custom impression trays.
2. fabricate custom occlusal appliances and bleaching trays.
3. fabricate diagnostic casts (e.g., trimming and finishing).
4. polish fixed appliances and prostheses.
5. polish removable appliances and prostheses.

(10%)

V. PATIENT EDUCATION AND ORAL HEALTH MANAGEMENT


Oral Health Information
1. Describe how to implement patient dental health education presentations,
including but not limited to:
advantages and disadvantages of various restorative materials or
procedures.
causes of dental diseases.
classifications and importance of occlusion.
effect of systemic disease on the healing process.
functions of saliva.
functions of the primary and permanent teeth and the relationship of the
supporting structures.
personal oral habits that may compromise general health.
stages of the eruption and exfoliation of the teeth.
special dental health needs (e.g., due to physical status or age).
2. Explain and clarify the procedures and services being delivered.
3. Explain the effects of all types of fluoride, the advantages of the various methods
of administration, and the dangers and results of overdosage.
Pre-/Post-Treatment Instruction
1. Describe how to provide oral and written pre- and post-treatment instructions
(e.g., prescribed medications).
2. Describe how to care for removable and non-removable appliances and
prostheses.
Demonstrate an understanding of plaque control techniques, including but not limited
to:
1. appropriate toothbrush selection and brushing techniques.
2. evaluate oral healthcare status and habits.
3. evaluate response to home-care therapy.
4. provide preventive oral healthcare information based on individual needs.
5. select and use oral hygiene devices (e.g., brushes, floss, interdental aids, oral
rinses, irrigating aids).

General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES


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6. select and use plaque disclosing aids.


Nutrition
1. Describe how to provide instruction and evaluate basic nutritional needs of
individual patients as they relate to dental health.
2. Explain the relationship of diet to the development of dental caries.
(12%)

VI. PREVENTION AND MANAGEMENT OF EMERGENCIES


Medical Conditions/Emergencies
1. Identify medical conditions that can cause medical emergencies in patients,
including but not limited to:
alcohol/substance abuse.
allergies.
asthma.
blood dyscrasias.
cancer.
cardiovascular disease.
diabetes mellitus or hypoglycemia.
emphysema.
epilepsy.
hypertension or hypotension.
kidney or liver problems.
pregnancy.
prosthetic replacements.
respiratory infection.
rheumatic fever.
ulcers.
2. Recognize medications related to the patients present and/or past
medical/dental history.
3. Demonstrate understanding of preventive measures to be used following drug
administration to avoid drug-induced emergencies.
4. Describe how to respond to and assist in the management of the signs and
symptoms related to specific medical conditions/emergencies likely to occur in
the dental office, including but not limited to:
airway obstruction.
allergic reactions.
blood loss.
cardiovascular or cerebrovascular irregularities.
contagious diseases.
diabetes- or epilepsy-related incidents.
fainting.
metabolic or neurologic disease.
reactions to drugs, anesthetics.
respiratory irregularities (e.g., hypo- or hyperventilation, asthma).
shock.
5. Describe how to assemble, maintain and recognize the use of drugs, appropriate
emergency supplies, and equipment in the prevention and/or effective
management of an emergency.
6. Describe how to prepare and post a listing of emergency support personnel.
Dental Conditions/Emergencies
1. Recognize the signs and symptoms related to specific dental
conditions/emergencies likely to occur in the office, including but not limited to:
oral contagious diseases.
soft tissue inflammations of the oral cavity.

General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES


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2. Describe how to implement and/or assist with appropriate procedures for the
management of dental emergencies.
(10%)

VII. OFFICE OPERATIONS


Supply and Inventory Control
1. Describe how to maintain and control supplies, including but not limited to:
manage backorders according to the inventory control system.
order supplies, instruments and equipment to maintain specified levels.
record and inventory items used.
rotate expendable supplies according to the expiration date.
rotate nonexpendable supplies according to the inventory control system.
2. Describe how to maintain security and necessary records of controlled
substances.
Maintenance of Equipment/Instruments
1. Describe how to perform preventive maintenance on the equipment and
instruments in the treatment room, as per manufacturers instructions.
2. Describe how to provide appropriate care and storage of supplies (e.g., sterile
disposable products, nitrous oxide, oxygen).
Demonstrate understanding of patient reception, communication and accounting,
including but not limited to:
1. appointment control process.
2. basic concepts of third-party payment.
3. communicate effectively and establish good working relationships with patients
and with other members of the dental care team.
4. explain fees charged to a patient as directed by the dentist.
5. financial management of a dental office.
6. initiate referral procedures for the patient as directed.
7. receive and dismiss patients and visitors.
Legal Aspects of Dentistry
1. Demonstrate understanding of legal records, including but not limited to:
file items (e.g., radiographic images, histories, correspondence) into
individual patient records.
items included as part of a legally documented patient record.
legal significance of medical and dental histories.
precautions necessary in lending records to another dental office.
record patient telephone communication and professional dental and medical
consultations.
various types of patient data in the dental office.
2. Demonstrate understanding of legal responsibilities and regulations, including but
not limited to:
action that a dental assistant should take after a threat to sue for malpractice.
consent for routine and emergency office dental care.
factors and precautions necessary to prevent lawsuits against dental
personnel.
legal responsibilities of the dental assistant in relation to the state dental
practice act.
patient refusal of recommended routine, surgical and emergency treatment.
patients right to privacy according to Health Insurance Portability and
Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations.
responsibilities and/or obligations of the dentist and patients in the dentistpatient relationship.
updates in Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines to maintain
office compliance.

General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES


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Dental Assisting National Board, Inc.


Measuring Dental Assisting Excellence

General Chairside Assisting (GC)


Suggested References for Exam Preparation
DANBs GC exam is a component of the DANB Certified Dental Assistant (CDA)
certification.

DANB exam committees use the following textbooks and reference materials to develop this exam.
This list does not include all of the available textbooks and materials for studying for this exam;
these are simply the resources that exam committee subject matter experts determined as
providing the most up-to-date information needed to meet or surpass a determined level of
competency for this exam.
This list is intended to help prepare for this exam. It is not intended to be an endorsement of any of
the publications listed. You should prepare for DANB certification and component exams using as
many different study materials as possible.
1. Bird, Doni L., and Debbie S. Robinson. Modern Dental Assisting. 10th and 11th ed. St. Louis,
MO: Elsevier/Saunders, 2012 and 2015.
2. Phinney, Donna J., and Judy H. Halstead. Dental Assisting: A Comprehensive Approach. 3rd
and 4th ed. Clifton Park, NY: Delmar, 2008 and 2013.
3. Hatrick, Carol D., and W. S. Eakle. Dental Materials: Clinical Applications for Dental Assistants
and Dental Hygienists. 3rd ed. St. Louis, MO: Elsevier/Saunders, 2016.
4. Bird, Doni L., and Debbie S. Robinson. Essentials of Dental Assisting. 5th ed. St. Louis, MO:
Elsevier/Saunders, 2013.
5. Little, James W., Donald A. Falace, Craig S. Miller and Nelson L. Rhodus. Dental Management
of the Medically Compromised Patient. 8th ed. St. Louis, MO: Elsevier/Mosby, 2013.
6. Malamed, Stanley F. Medical Emergencies in the Dental Office. 7th ed. St. Louis, MO:
Elsevier/Mosby, 2015.
7. Gaylord, Linda J. The Administrative Dental Assistant. 3rd ed. St. Louis, MO:
Elsevier/Saunders, 2012.
8. General Chairside Assisting: A Review for a National Chairside Exam (Course #613).
www.dentalassistant.org.

Note that each states dental board implements regulations and establishes rules for delegating
legally allowable duties to dental assistants. Passing one or more of the DANB component exams
or earning DANB certification only conveys authority to perform these duties in those states that
recognize these exams or this certification as meeting state dental assisting requirements. This
information is at www.danb.org/Meet-State-Requirements.aspx.
General Chairside Assisting EXAM BLUEPRINTS AND SUGGESTED REFERENCES
2015 Dental Assisting National Board, Inc. Effective 01/01/2015

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