AADSAS Application Advice Dental Assistant Dental School Portfolio Tips Website

UCSF Caries Management by Risk Assessment (CAMBRA) FREE Online Course + Signature Track Giveaway

UCSF200UCSF is once again offering their free online course about Caries Management by Risk Assessment (CAMBRA) to those interested in dental hygiene and a more modern approach of preventative dentistry. Dr. Featherstone, the Dean of UCSF School of Dentistry, teaches the concepts of CAMBRA which he developed over the past few decades over a 6 week online course through the popular website

This course will provide the scientific basis for caries (dental decay) risk assessment and practice interventions. You will immediately be able to apply “caries management by risk assessment” into your clinical setting or into your personal health care.

This will be the second time the course is offered and best of all it is FREE for the standard version! There are several optional pay grades such as the verified certificate through Signature Track and/or 12 continuing education credits for the state of California.

I enrolled in the first session of this course back in October 2013 and overall it was very informative and a fun change of pace from your typical college curriculum. Dr. Featherstone does his best to keep you entertained by talking about his adventures around the world between each segment. I opted into the verified certificate  and verification page (Signature Track) so that it can be added to my online profiles such as LinkedIn. You can view my verification page here if interested in learning more about this option offers. A verified certificate (optional) currently costs $69 dollars. I am hosting a giveaway for one free Signature Track course. The giveaway details are at the end of this post!

The course will begin on March 31st and run through May 9th. The course requires 4-6 hours per week in order to watch the lectures, read the material, complete the online multiple choice quizzes, and answer the prompts. I think it is a great opportunity for pre-dental students and an excellent achievement to place on your application for dental school. The course covers the following topics:

Week 1:

  • Understand what dental caries is
  • Understand the concept of the caries balance
  • Know the three principal pathological factors of caries formation
  • Understand that multiple bacterial species are responsible for dental caries
  • Understand the role of frequent ingestion of fermentable carbohydrates in dental caries
  • Recognize hyposalivation, how this occurs, and its importance in caries progression

Week 2:

  • Refine the concept of the caries balance
  • Know and understand the multiple caries protective components in saliva
  • Understand demineralization and the role of fluoride
  • Understand remineralization and the role of fluoride

Week 3:

  • Understand remineralization and the role of fluoride
  • Understand how fluoride interacts with cariogenic bacteria
  • Know the three main mechanisms of action of fluoride
  • Know about fluoride toothpastes and fluoride mouthrinses

Week 4:

  • Know about fluoride products for the dental office and for home use by prescription
  • Know why high concentration fluoride products are used for high caries risk individuals
  • Know the antibacterial products currently available for caries control
  • Understand the root caries process including similarities and differences with coronal caries

Week 5: 

  • Understand the distinction among disease indicators, pathological (biological risk) factors, and protective factors
  • Know that the CAMBRA risk assessment method is validated in clinical use in thousands of patients for 6 years through adult
  • Know the bacterial assessment methods
  • Understand the sequence for the entire CAMBRA method

Week 6:

  • Know how to assess caries risk for an individual as low, moderate, high, or extreme
  • Know the currently recommended chemical therapy for patients at low, moderate, high, or extreme risk
  • To study numerous examples of risk assessment and therapy and how to build this into the treatment plan
  • Understand the differences between risk assessment for young children, older children, and adults

Learn more about the course and register at


I am raffling off a Signature Track Course ($69 dollar value) to somebody on this website who fills out the Ask Elias form and attaches their confirmation page for the CAMBRA course. From all the entries, a random drawing will decide the winner! The form will only accept the following file types .doc|.docx|.pub|.pdf|.png|.jpg|.jpeg (limited for website security). If you are having difficulty with the attachment, submit the form without the file so I can contact you.

The raffle ends January 31st, 2014 and the winner will be announced shortly after!

Advice Dental Assistant Dental School Tips

U.S. News Rates Dentist as the #1 Best Profession of 2013

You guys are in the right place! Dentistry was crowned as the best job of the year by U.S. News. The list is based on the Labor Department’s predictions of the occupations with the highest hiring demand from now until 2020; selections take into account employment growth as well as median salary, estimated stress level, and work-life balance.

U.S. News has put together a wonderful resource analyzing dentistry’s future. This page includes in-depth salary analysis, a summary of what is needed to succeed as a dentist, as well as, advice from dentists.

As the article mentioned, it is ideal to begin working towards dental school starting in high school. This is one of the reasons why the next few articles will be directed towards high school students who are interested in dentistry.

Happy Holidays! Dental Holidays

Advice Dental Assistant Dental School Pre-Dental Society Tips Website

Introducing the Ultimate List of Pre-Dental Resources

Hey everybody!

After seeing the popularity of the post Recommended Resources for Pre-Dental Students, I decided to release the full list of resources!

Today we celebrate the release of the Ultimate List of Pre-Dental Resources! The list can be found at the top of the website in between “Ask Elias” and “Portfolio“. It contains many of the links I have looked through and collected over the years. I would highly recommend using it to its full potential. There is much more information there than I will be able to relay on

The plan is to keep the list growing as I discover new resources. I also hope to figure out a way of making it much more organized. Currently I am looking into organizing using buttons or hover-over text-boxes. If you have any recommended links of your own, please send them through “Ask Elias”! Of course, you will be credited for your find!

The list will also be going onto AlmazDensitry’s sister website Pre-Dental Society at UC Irvine so keep on the look out!

Have a great weekend!

Advice Dental Assistant Pre-Dental Society Tips

CDA Cares Sacramento 2012

This past weekend the CDA ran a free clinic titled CDA Cares at Cal Expo in Sacramento, CA. CDA Cares is a collaborative effort between the California Dental Association (CDA), the CDA Foundation, the Missions of Mercy, and the dozens of sponsors of the event. CDA Cares strives to provide free dental care to Californians in need.

Stephen O’Donnell, the president of the Pre-Dental Society at UC Irvine, and I volunteered both days at the clinic in every way we could. Throughout the two days we got the opportunity to guide patients around, assist with hygiene and extractions, and take x-rays. The event was an excellent place for pre-dental students to network, learn, and have a great time with other dental professionals. Volunteers kept the atmosphere cheery and efficiently worked to achieve a organization record breaking 1,100+ treated patients per day. This is truly an AMAZING accomplishment! To put that into perspective, the organization typically averages 1,500 patients across two days.

Throughout the experience, we met amazing new people like Dr. Craig S. Yarborough, the Associate Dean of the University of the Pacific Dental School, ran into old acquaintances, and got to work with dental companies who sponsored the event. We were shocked to see that while there were hundreds of dental professionals hard at work, there were hundreds more of volunteers who had no relation to dentistry and attended the event for the benefit of the community. Everybody was working together so efficiently!

Volunteering at this clinic has really opened up my eyes as to how many people in California do not have access to dental care. It is estimated that one in three individuals in California do not have access to dental care. We have learned through this experiences that some of these individuals truly care about their oral hygiene and will go to great lengths to get the dental help they need. Many of these people waited outside of Cal Expo for OVER 24 hours in order to get dental treatment.

If you get the chance, we would highly encourage coming out to one of these events so you can experience it firsthand. Everybody is friendly and you will not be asked to do anything you do not feel comfortable doing. If there is anything you have never done before, all you have to do is ask and most doctors will get a thrill out of getting to teach a future dental student a few pointers.

If you are interested in participating in a future event we plan to keep all PDS Irvine members updated by posting these events on the facebook group page. To Check out more photos from this event please visit our photo gallery for the event!

Advice ASDA Dental Assistant Tips

Recommended Resources for Pre-Dental Students

With application season right around the corner I thought it would be a great time to post some resources that I commonly use. While most of these have similar information, each one of the websites recommended below has a unique attribute that makes it stand out over the others. To best prepare for dental school, I would recommend bookmarking and using all of these resources along the way.


  • AADSAS, the Associated American Dental School Applied Service, is an organization run under the ADEA (American Dental Education Association) specifically designed to provide a universal application to dental schools. As you can guess, this is a vital resource if you want to become a dentist. It is the best and only way to apply for all the dental schools you are interest in attending. One application will contain and deliver all components of the application including your personal statement and your letters of recommendation to every school on your list.
  • Application season starts June 4th, and since you want to get into your dream dental school, you should give yourself every advantage possible. Submitting your application early is the simplest and most effective way to significantly improve your chances of getting into your dream school. This is due to the fact that the early applicants get more interview opportunities since none of the seats have been filled yet. As time goes on, seats begin to fill and schools begin slowing down admittance rates. Make sure to have everything ready as soon as possible so that you can submit and complete your application within the first few weeks of the application season.
  • This is the best resource for talking to other pre-dental students. In my opinion, these individuals are the experts of how to get into dental school. Many of them have already gone through the process and are there to help spread their knowledge to get others in. The people who put a lot of effort into this website usually can be considered experts and as a result many of them have outrageously high GPAs, DAT scores, and achievements. Please do not feel intimidated by them. These students are commonly the “cream of the crop” when it comes to applicants. (Shut Down) – Alternatives: &
  • This is the best resource for statistics on dental schools. While the website does not have the greatest design, the information it collects is unique and I would recommend anybody applying to dental school to use it. is a great way to keep track of one’s stage in the application process versus others applying the same schools.
  • It is member driven in the sense that members update their status at the dental schools they apply to. For example, when somebody gets an interview at a specific dental school, they update their status which automatically updates the statistics for that dental school. This data is obviously not complete since many pre-dental applicant do not know of this website. Although the system is not perfect, it is the only way to keep track of the status of the current application season. You can get a good idea of the interview rates, acceptance rates, rejection rates, and attendance rates. You can also look into the previous years worth of data collected by this website and you can compare statistics over the years. As with, the people who use this website are commonly the top students. Please do not be alarmed about the high averages posted by people on this website.


  • ASDA, the American Student Dental Association is an excellent group to be a member of. Their mission statement (below) defines the purpose of the association perfectly.
The American Student Dental Association is a national student-run organization that protects and advances the rights, interests and welfare of dental students. It introduces students to lifelong involvement in organized dentistry and provides services, information, education, representation and advocacy.
  • If you are interested, you can become a registered member. ASDA has free resources, but I would highly recommend being a paid member for at least one year so you can take advantage of the resources they provide you with. For $58 dollars you get:
  • Free subscription to our publications like Contour, and our e-newsletter Word of Mouth (emailed monthly)
  • A copy of our handbook “Getting Into Dental School
  • Members-only access to our website
  • Discounts on products and services that are valuable to students, including T-Mobile wireless phone plans, Kaplan’s DAT courses and materials, Bank of America ASDA credit card, Geico insurance and more
  • Opportunities to network with 18,000 dental students through our national, district and chapter events as well as our Facebook page


Please visit these resources! They are there for pre-dental students to take advantage of. I would highly recommend reading through these to learn tips that will help you get into your dream dental school. If you know any other great sources, please comment below or email me using the “Ask Elias” page. I would love to expand this list as more excellent resources are discovered.