How to Become a Dental Assistant

Did you know that dental assistants make an average of more than $20 an hour in the United States?

Working at a dentist’s office early can help advance you in the field and pay for your education until you can become a dentist.

If you are interested in this career path, you should get started on making the right decisions. 

Continue reading to learn about the steps of becoming a dental assistant so that you can start your career! 

Join a Dental Health Program

One of the first steps after your graduate high school is to join a dental assistant health program. 

Vocational schools and community colleges are often the best places to search for these programs. The wonderful part about getting this education is that it doesn’t cost as much as a degree would. Look for a dental program that’s accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation to open up job opportunities. 

It typically takes about 2 years to complete this program, depending on how many courses you take at once. 

Obtain Your License & Certification

If you are interested in working in the oral hygiene industry, you need to look at your state’s requirements. 

The DANB works with each state to specify education and testing requirements. Depending on where you are, you may have to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam. This exam is over 300 questions long and covers topics involving quality of care, radiation health, and more. 

To become a dental assistant in a particular field, you will need additional education and training. This is necessary for orthodontic, registered, and preventative functions assistants. 

Find a Job

After you pass your exams, you’ll have to work on your resume and start getting a job. 

It’s best to search for entry-level positions in dental offices. Depending on the needs of each office, you can start working with patients in the office or slowly transition from reception to assisting. This is a great path to take if you want to understand all of the factors that go into providing dental healthcare. 

As you apply and interview at offices, it should become clear where you would be most comfortable. Don’t be afraid to ask questions during interviews to ensure that the office will help encourage career growth and support. 

Continue Your Education

When you are a dental assistant, you need to continue education to ensure that patients are receiving the best care possible.

Advancing your degree or getting additional certifications can help you earn more money. Not only will your paychecks increase, but so will your knowledge and abilities for the job. Take each step of your dental career as a learning experience, especially if you want to become a dentist.  

Do You Have What It Take To Become a Dental Assistant?

Becoming a dental assistant is the best path if you are interested in working in the dental industry.

You can get a variety of entry-level jobs with this type of certification and it only takes a few years to obtain. If you are motivated and want to learn more about getting a job in this field, you need to ask questions and get involved with treatment. 

Please read our blog for more information about finding the best career path and following your passions!