We dental technicians are health care professionals with nationally-accredited qualification that enables us to create/repair/process items such as dental prosthesis under the supervision of a dental surgeon. As all of our faces are unique, each individual’s mouth cavity size, shape of his/her teeth, occlusion and biting strength are all different. We create dental prostheses based on information provided from dental surgeons.
The Japan Dental Technologists Association is the only national organization consisting of dental technicians holding national qualifications. From its establishment in 1955, the Association has cooperated with the government and also other related organizations to contribute to the improvement and support of dental care and health by conducting activities such as various research/studies to ensure the safety of dental prostheses, activities to ensure the quality and development of dental technicians and by holding academic programs for the self-improvement of each technician.
Education and Training Activities
Continuing Dental Education for Dental Technicians
In order to provide technical and self-improvement opportunities for each dental technician, the Japan Dental Technologists Association received the sponsorship of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare to create a Continuing Dental Education system in 1986. This system was the first ever of its kind in Japan’s medical service community. Over 200 learning courses take place nationwide every year since this system has been established. These courses focus not only on special skills for the dental technician, but also on other fields of knowledge and education, such as business management and related laws and regulations. From 2003 onwards, there has been a focus on infection control learning courses commissioned from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, which are held every year with many participants.
Authorizing Certified Teacher Qualifications
Most of the courses held by the Japan Dental Technologists Association are conducted by “Japan Dental Technologists Association’s Certified Teachers” who have been screened for certification by the Association. The screening committee consists of experts in the genre, and presently 130 individuals are registered as certified teachers.
Lectures on Work Standards
As a dental technician’s office is a medical-related facility, there is a need to observe the Dental Technicians Act and comply with those standards when undergoing actions such as waste disposal. Because of this, the Japan Dental Technologists Association holds training workshops for the purpose of thoroughly educating participants on the Dental Technicians Act and other related rules and regulations.
Awarding Excellent Theses
The Japan Dental Technologists Association invites submissions of theses to be published in its newsletters. This is for the purpose of promoting further academic studies and incentives to make the knowledge public. Of these submitted theses, selected works of excellence will be chosen every year and rewarded by the Association.
Public Awareness Activities
Communicating Information on Dental Health and Technology
The Association strives to promote further public awareness in outstanding dental technology and knowledge by publishing proposals and theses in our newsletters and web pages. We also communicate the necessity of dental health and the work content of dental technicians to the general public in order to make this information common knowledge.
Public Awareness on Related Rules and Regulations
The Association provides guidance for proper execution of government notices and related rules and regulations, such as the “the Dental Technicians’ Quality Control Guideline for Creation of Dental Prostheses” issued by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare to ensure the quality of dental prostheses, and the partial revision of the Ordinance for Enforcement of the Dental Technicians Act issued in April 1, 2013 which revised the items listed in the dental laboratory order forms and the standards/facilities of dental technologists’ offices.
Furthermore, activities to handle responsibilities and requests from government agencies other than the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare—such as managing data of the environmental and waste material that is generated from dental procedures—are also in our hands.
Improving Work Conditions at Dental Technicians’ offices
The Association strives to publicize details of improvements in the dental technician’s occupational safety and health, such as counter measures toward respiratory illness due to powdery dust and infections, by holding lectures, issuing leaflets and publishing articles in newsletters and web pages.
The Japan Dental Technologists Association cooperates in the operation and publicity of congresses held by the Nippon Academy of Dental Technology, for the purpose of promoting academic establishment of dental techniques. Furthermore, the Association also cooperates in the operation of the International Congress of Dental Technology, which is usually held once every ten years, in hopes of contributing to the promotion of dental health to people worldwide.
Research and Study Activities
Implementing the “Dental Technologists Survey Report”
Made up of data from 3000 professionals every three years, the Japan Dental Technologists Association organizes the “Dental Technologists Survey Report” and analyzes changes that occur over the years, with the purpose of continuously monitoring the state of dental technicians and their work places. Results are provided to the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare and also provided widely to various related organizations, and is used in planning and promoting social policies and environmental improvement of the dental technician trade.
Research and Analysis of Policy Promotion
The Association with cooperation from the Nippon Academy of Dental Technology conducts research and analysis on research findings made on categories such as the quantity of materials that have been used, the difficulty of procedures and time studies of dental techniques, under commission from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.
International Exchange Activities
Membership in the “Asia-Pacific Dental Technologists Federation”
Many dental technicians’ organizations from various countries and regions of the Asia-Pacific gathered to establish the “Asia-Pacific Dental Technologists Federation” in 1983. The goal of this Federation is to contribute to the development of international education and health by sharing the newest dental knowledge and techniques, and also to promote international communication between dental technicians. Ever since its establishment, the Federation has promoted international exchange through focusing on improving dental techniques and knowledge, with the Japan Dental Technologists Association working as its executive office for many years.
The Association has been accepting trainees selected by the Japan International Medical Technology Foundation and teaches them our Japanese dental techniques and knowledge, with the purpose of contributing to the growth of dental techniques in developing countries in South-East Asia and South America. This operation has been continuing every other year since 1996, and the Association has so far accepted nine trainees.
We are now deliberating operations for dissemination and education of techniques/knowledge to developing countries with the cooperation of organizations such as the Japan Dental Association and the Japan International Medical Technology Foundation in the near future.