If you seek a new career path in the dental health industry, here’s a little something to smile about: the number and size of dental practices nationwide is growing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Ongoing research linking oral health and general health will continue to increase the demand for preventive dental services.” That means there may be more jobs available for people with dental assistant training in the years ahead. In fact, the need for professionals with dental assistant training is expected to grow by more than 19 percent by 2026.
Want to Enter the Growing Field of Dentistry?
If you are considering a career as a dental assistant and want to become a member of a dental team, acquiring proper training is the first step. Depending on the institution and program, dental assistant training can be completed in less than 12 months. Courses should focus on vital areas of the dental assistant profession, giving you the laboratory, clinical, and office management skills you need to qualify for an entry-level job in a dental office.
In a dental assistant training program, you should receive a mix of classroom and hands-on training, including:
- Preparing dental patients for treatment
- Teaching patients preventive dentistry practices
- Handling dental X-ray equipment and taking and processing X-rays
- Working with dental tools and materials
- Creating temporary crowns under the guidance of a licensed practitioner
- Billing patients and handling their paperwork
- Managing the front office