Decontamination nurse at pdse

“I started as a Trainee Dental Nurse with PDSE in 2013 and later qualified in June 2015. Since 2017 I have been working as a Registered Dental Nurse for 4 days per week with PDSE and I also work 1 day a week in general practice.

It’s different here to working in general practice as it’s so student focused. The nurses get to work with patients still but you often get to know the students better and you build up a rapport with them first. The students work closely with the patients and get to know them a bit more than the Nurses do so it’s slightly different.

Nurses support the students whilst they are treating patients on our open bays and often, they rely upon us for lots of help, support and guidance. We can help with things like cross infection guidance, the dental chairs, mixing materials, referrals, going through various guidelines and the medical emergencies trolley too. Nurses have to be confident with guiding the students within their scope of practice; sometimes we have to support them with remediation too if they make a mistake.

Although we don’t do as much chairside nursing when we work with the students, we do have our own team of PDSE clinicians so the nurses have opportunities to work chairside to support the PDSE clinicians. I think this is good because it helps us to keep our skills up when we aren’t nursing as much as we would in practice.

Everyone helps each other here at PDSE and there is a nice team spirit. When new people come in everyone is really friendly and people tend to settle in quite quickly. You get a lot of support here if there is anything you need to know and there are often opportunities for progression too for courses such as Radiography. ”


Emma Hensman

Registered Dental Nurse & Mental Health First Aider 

“I qualified as a Dentist in 2013 and after a few years in NHS general practice, I started at PDSE in 2019.

Although I only work at PDSE now, I used to work in a private practice too. I find that working at PDSE is quite different compared to working in a private practice, mainly because a lot of the patients tend to be more dentally stable in a private practice. You tend to see patients who don’t need too much dental work done so it’s mainly a lot of check-ups and maintenance really.

The patient base here is similar to NHS general practice. The working environment is really supportive here and you feel like you are truly part of a team, with no underlying pressure from any specific targets. You have more time and better facilities to really look after your patients. Many patients are dental phobic and may not have visited a Dentist for a long time but we have plenty of time to work with them and make them feel comfortable. All of the facilities at PDSE are excellent so it a lows us to do the best job possible for the patient.

As PDSE works closely with Peninsula Dental School, I feel like I am always learning new things. It’s quite easy to keep up to date with all of the changes that are happening within Dentistry. Working here does mean there is a bit more paperwork to fill in, such as consent forms, booking forms, and patient surveys too. Although this is different to working in a practice, it’s a good thing really as you know you are keeping the patient well informed and you are looking at them as a whole rather than just thinking about their teeth. Working at PDSE is like being part of a family; you look forward to seeing everyone each day. If you need help with anything whether it’s from the Admin team or the Dental Nurses, everyone is always willing to help and support you. It’s definitely very much a team working environment.”


Nithya Miller

Registered Dentist

Nithya Miller