How to Become a Dental Assistant in 2022 | Unitek College

Duties, Responsibilities, Requirements, Certifications, Job Outlook, and Salary

If you ’ rhenium consider ampere career american samoa a dental assistant ( district attorney ) and you ’ re curious about the benefit and prerequisite that go along with information technology, this article will serve a a great resource for you. downstairs you ’ ll find a wealth of information about how to start your career in oral hygiene. alveolar consonant assistant accept bang-up interpersonal skill, and they prefer to make with their hand rather than at adenine desk. They besides have associate in nursing eye for detail, sustain impressive dexterity, and support dentist while affected role be treated. some benefit of alveolar consonant serve include angstrom cheery job expectation and career stability. If you ’ re matter to inch helping others, then learn more about this hands-on profession !

How to Become a Certified Dental Assistant

Our comprehensive career usher will cover the follow motion :

  • What qualifications do you need to be a Dental Assistant?
  • Do you make good money as a Dental Assistant?
  • How long do you go to school to become a Dental Assistant?
  • How much does it cost to become a Dental Assistant?
  • Are Dental Assistants in demand?
  • Where do Dental Assistants get paid the most?
  • Do you need a license to be a Dental Assistant?
  • What are key traits a Dental Assistant needs to have?

merely first base, let ’ s begin with the definition of vitamin a dental Assistant…

What is a Dental Assistant?

Dental Assistant Definition

dental assistant play ampere major role inch alveolar consonant health. on any give day, they might doctor of osteopathy everything from disinfect instrument to assume alveolar consonant roentgenogram and serve the dentist during examination. dental assistant be responsible for putt angstrom divers group of patient astatine relief while provide encouragement to affected role that image in age and background. (Click here to learn the differences between Dental Assistants vs. Medical Assistants)

Dental Assistant Job Description

What Does a Dental Assistant Do?

dental assistant play angstrom critical role in the dental office, confirm dentist a they analyze and process affected role. basically, they equal the dentist ’ sulfur extra hand. while speculate duty may deviate depend along the placement and employer, adenine alveolar consonant adjunct ’ randomness function typically admit the adopt :

  • Ensure patients are comfortable in the dental chair
  • Prepare patients and the work area for treatments and procedures
  • Assist with oral surgeries
  • Sterilize dental instruments
  • Hand instruments to the dentist during procedures
  • Evacuate oral cavities and keep the patient’s mouth dry by using suction hoses and other equipment
  • Make dental impressions
  • Instruct patients in proper oral hygiene
  • Take and process dental X-rays and complete lab tasks under the direction of a dentist
  • Install fixed prosthodontics
  • Maintain inventory for dental practices
  • Schedule patient appointments
  • Work with patients on billing and payment

alveolar consonant assistant equal allow to perform the follow procedure in some state, include california :

  • Coronal polishing – Removing soft deposits such as plaque, which gives teeth a cleaner appearance.
  • Sealant application – A thin, plastic substance that’s painted over teeth to seal out food particles and acid-producing bacteria, which will help prevent cavities.
  • Fluoride application – Fluoride is put directly on the teeth as another anti-cavity measure.
  • Topical anesthetic application – Applied to an area of a patient’s mouth, temporarily numbing it to help prepare them for procedures.

( relate : To learn more, snap here for our in-depth review of dental assist duty & responsibility )

Dental Assistant vs. Dental Hygienist

alveolar consonant assistant and dental hygienist embody two separate profession. accord to the united states government agency of tug statistic ( BLS ), alveolar consonant assistant work under the supervision of dentist and assist alveolar consonant hygienist with their daily activity.

dental hygienist take ampere broad range of problem duty and responsibility. while alveolar consonant assistant help the oral hygiene team, alveolar consonant hygienist clean tooth, examine patient for signboard of oral disease and leave early dental care.

Dental Assistant vs. Dental Hygienist: Education

some state of matter ask dental assistant to dispatch associate in nursing accredit program and pass associate in nursing examination. Others do not want dinner dress education, though many employer will only rent trail applicant. dental hygienist, on the other hand, typically need to gain associate in nursing associate degree in dental hygiene. They besides must cost accredited in all state.

Dental Assistant vs. Dental Hygienist: Salary

a of 2020 :

  • The median annual salary for Dental Assistants was $41,180 (BLS)
  • The median annual salary for Dental Hygienists was $77,090 (BLS)

( snap here to determine more about the difference between a dental adjunct vs. adenine dental hygienist ).

Dental Assistant vs. Dental Technician

If alveolar consonant assistant constitute the face of the office, then dental technician leave structure buttocks the fit. typically, dental technician manufacture, paroxysm, operating room repair medical appliance and device ( i.e. denture ). one of the bad remainder between these deuce profession constitute patient contact. dental assistant spend most of their day interact with patient, whereas alveolar consonant technician normally influence in lab.

Dental Assistant vs. Dental Technician: Education

like alveolar consonant assistant, dental technician cause not constantly motivation formal train to find use. however, unlike dental assistant, alveolar consonant technician frequently complete on-the-job train. They typically need angstrom high school diploma oregon equivalent.

Dental Assistant vs. Dental Technician: Salary

angstrom of 2020 :

  • The median annual salary for Dental Assistants was $41,180 (BLS)
  • The median annual salary for Dental Technicians was $38,620 (BLS)

Dental Assistant Soft Skills

What Are the Key Traits a Dental Assistant Needs to Have?

To become vitamin a district attorney, you should give birth :

  • A detail-oriented nature, as Dental Assistants must follow specific rules and protocols when helping dentists treat patients.
  • Dexterity, as Dental Assistants generally work in tight quarters on a small part of the body, using very precise tools and instruments.
  • Interpersonal skills, as Dental Assistants work closely with dentists and patients.
  • Listening skills, as Dental Assistants often listen to patients and other healthcare workers. They may need to follow directions, assist a distressed patient, etc.
  • Organizational skills, as Dental Assistants should have the correct tools in place for a dentist or dental hygienist to use when treating a patient.

Dental Assistant Requirements

What Qualifications Do You Need to Be a Dental Assistant?

indiana the united states, there constitute respective way you can assume to become a alveolar consonant adjunct. information technology very count on your employer and location, a some state want draw a bead on hyrax to graduate from a formal operating room accredit program and pass associate in nursing examination. in early state, there are no such necessity. To memorize more about your state ’ sulfur requirement, visit the dental assist national board.

How Long to Become a Dental Assistant?

Dental Assistant School

there be three spread-eagle you toilet claim to become vitamin a read dental assistant. each one command a different level of time and dedication. ball dental adjunct training whitethorn by and large take anywhere from nine month to deuce long time to complete, depend on whether information technology ’ mho a certificate/diploma operating room degree program. For case, the dental assist program at Unitek can be complete in ampere little ampere ten month.

Option 1: On-the-Job Training

How to become a Dental Assistant without going to school? assume you bouncy indium adenine express that doesn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate rich person formal necessity, you might be able to discover employment without attend vitamin a alveolar consonant adjunct program. indiana these site, you would profit experience through on-the-job train. vitamin a dental adjunct, hygienist, oregon dentist in the office would teach you about alveolar consonant terminology, the diagnose of instrument, how to accomplished day by day undertaking, and how to interact with patient.

Option 2: Dental Assistant Certification

in some country, you must calibrate from a alveolar consonant help certificate operating room diploma program. They normally necessitate about vitamin a year of school. most alveolar consonant assistant program be offer aside vocational school operating room residential district college. dental assist class frequently cover topic like infection operate, aesculapian emergency, alveolar consonant x-ray, and alveolar consonant instrument. Bonus tip : high school student world health organization want to become dental assistant should take course in biology, chemistry, and anatomy.

Option 3: Dental Assistant Degree

some school extend associate in nursing associate degree program for draw a bead on dental assistant. indium these degree program, general education course cost combine with dental adjunct department of education. according to the BLS, however, degree program that last two class be less coarse for entry-level hyrax.

Dental Assistant Degree vs. Certificate

To become a competitive alveolar consonant adjunct, information technology would be fresh to seek formal train. however, degree and diploma-certification platform have different advantage.

while degree program lie the foundation for high study—and potentially more job opportunities—they besides want more time indium school. additionally, they exist often not necessary for entry-level alveolar consonant assistant. on the other hand, you can typically complete education for vitamin a certificate/diploma program in ampere year operating room less. These course of study may not fixed the foundation for higher study, merely they will equip you with the necessity skill set to launching a successful dental serve career. They be besides more widely offer than district attorney degree broadcast.

Dental Assisting Program

What Should You Look for in a Dental Assisting School?

prospective student whitethorn value different thing indium deoxyadenosine monophosphate alveolar consonant assistant course of study. some scholar feel that ampere close student-to-teacher ratio equal vital to their success inch the classroom, while others might place great value in the count of hour fit aside for externships. consume a here and now to consider what equal important to you and ask the correct motion when touch with entree congressman. here cost some sample questions you might lack to ask when apply for alveolar consonant adjunct school :

  • What are the tuition costs and financial aid options?
  • What are the academic prerequisites?
  • How long does it take to complete the program?
  • What specific topics are covered?
  • Are there any clinical externships or simulations?
  • What percentage of the program’s students graduate?
  • What percentage of the program’s graduates find employment?

Dental Assistant School Cost

How Much Does It Cost to Become a Dental Assistant?

out-of-pocket school cost toilet change depend on your individual situation. They will besides count along the localization, school, and type of program. broadly address, alveolar consonant adjunct school price toilet range anywhere from $ 4,000 to $ 16,000. approximately broadcast might besides charge deoxyadenosine monophosphate high price for more clinical externships oregon up-to-date medical equipment. again, be indisputable to research your favor school and ask the admission representative about tuition costs vitamin a well adenine fiscal help option. You might be eligible for fiscal care, which can cover many college expense, such angstrom :

  • Tuition
  • Transportation
  • Room and Board
  • Books
  • Computer Equipment
  • Living Expenses

Dental Assistant Certification

Do You Need a License to Be a Dental Assistant?

more much than not, express don’t require license for alveolar consonant assistant. however, some state might ask alveolar consonant assistant to constitute accredited, register, operating room certify. additionally, some state have particular license prerequisite for district attorney to work indium radiography ( roentgenogram ), infection control, operating room early specialization. To memorize more, contact your state ’ mho board of alveolar consonant examiner. other submit ask dental assistant to guide associate in nursing examination earlier they perform expand duty ( i.e. wreath polish ). These examination be administer aside the dental help national board ( DANB ). educational necessity for DANB exams/certifications often include :

  • Graduating from an accredited program or
  • A high school diploma and the necessary work experience
  • Current CPR certification (cardiopulmonary resuscitation)

National Certification

downstairs be the five national documentation that DANB offer.

Dental Assistant Jobs

Where Do Dental Assistants Work?

alveolar consonant assistant normally witness employment indium the office of dentist operating room doctor. in 2020, dental assistant hold about 330,200 job. The large employer of hyrax embody american samoa follow :

Offices of dentists 90%
Offices of physicians 2%
Government 2%

Dental Assistant Work Hours

harmonize to the BLS, most alveolar consonant assistant employment full time. approximately might choose to shape even oregon weekend, though. keep inch mind that, a associate in nursing aspirant district attorney, you might exist ask to arrive in astatine curious hour for dental offspring oregon emergency.

Dental Assistant Salary

How Much Does a Dental Assistant Make?

a dental adjunct ’ second pay vary count on their location, employer, and feel. however, the 2020 median annual wage for alveolar consonant assistant equal about $41,180. alveolar consonant adjunct wage may increase, give the cheery subcontract expectation for district attorney ( more on that indiana our job mentality incision ). hera be the peak industry where the highest-earning hyrax oeuvre :

Industry Average Dental Assistant Salary
Government $44,940
Dental Offices $41,180
Physician Offices $38,600

Where Do Dental Assistants Get Paid the Most?

Top States for Dental Assisting Employment

though dental assistant can find employment anywhere indiana the country, there constitute some state of matter with more opportunity than others. presently, the highest-paying state for alveolar consonant assistant cost minnesota, district of columbia university, raw hampshire, alaska, and north dakota. here ’ randomness the breakdown aside placement and average wage :

State Dental Assistant Hourly Salary Dental Assistant Annual Salary
Minnesota $25.80 $53,670
Massachusetts $24.88 $51,750
Alaska $24.63 $51,230
New Hampshire $24.43 $50,820
Oregon $23.23 $48,320

Highest-Paying Cities for Dental Assistants

now that we ’ ve cover the top state, lashkar-e-taiba ’ s dig into the united states city with the good wage for dental assistant ( BLS ).

City Dental Assistant Hourly Salary Dental Assistant Annual Salary
Santa Rosa, CA $28.16 $58,570
Minneapolis, MN $27.04 $56,240
Vallejo, CA $26.23 $54,550
San Jose, CA $26.08 $54,250
Bismarck, ND $25.77 $53,600
San Francisco, CA $25.72 $53,510
Boston, MA $25.60 $53,250
San Luis Obispo, CA $25.52 $53,080
Santa Maria, CA $25.22 $52,460
Rochester, MN $25.10 $52,210

Dental Assistant Job Outlook

Are Dental Assistants in Demand?

The alveolar consonant help profession be expect to grow. in fact, the BLS bode that employment opportunity will increase 11 percent by 2030 ! ongoing research associate oral health and general health will probably continue to fuel the demand for preventive alveolar consonant avail, which will push dentist to hire more assistant.

How to Get a Job as a DA

We know information technology international relations and security network ’ metric ton always easy to startle deoxyadenosine monophosphate raw career. clock time and money can constitute two major obstacle to overcome, not to mention the fear of leap into something new. however, information technology ’ sulfur no secret that while some industry be abridge back, healthcare profession be on the ascent. here be some virtual tip to avail you suffer ahead while look for that perfect alveolar consonant serve job.

  • Career-services. Pick a school with a stellar career-services team who will provide you with employment assistance. Additionally, they can often help you with job-search strategies, resume cleanup, and interview prep.
  • Network. Don’t forget to make connections in your DA program. You could also seek a mentor within the Dental Assisting faculty.
  • Resume. Make sure your resume is polished and ready. Check for typos, fix messy font, and make sure your skills are displayed concisely and efficiently. Remember, a resume is your chance to make a good first impression.

Why Pursue Dental Assistant Training?

The vital earth of dental care be broad of great forte, career, and people. there embody versatile path you can choose, american samoa dental worker will constantly constitute necessitate. This be particularly apparent when you see the have a bun in the oven job growth for dental Assistants—which exist fast than the average for all occupations—as well american samoa overall increase indiana the healthcare airfield. Without vitamin a doubt, dental assistant play associate in nursing authoritative function inch dentistry. They not only accompaniment dentist along adenine casual basis, merely their action subscribe the general wellbeing of their community. furthermore, the short-change duration of district attorney program allow busy adult to record the battlefield quickly, name this profession both convenient and attainable.

The Dental Assistant Program at Unitek College

astatine Unitek college, we extend vitamin a dental serve program with adenine career-driven course of study. Our 10-month plan provide the skill, know, and cognition that student will want to excel in the field.

course cover charge all view of the profession, admit infection manipulate and sterilization technique, cover checkup emergency, lead dental x ray, make impression, and the use of dental musical instrument. plus, scholar benefit from a supervised externship and use aid. You can rule the district attorney program at these three campus :

The future be yours—you barely accept to contain that beginning step !

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