Provide support and assistance under the instruction and supervision of a dentist.
Clinical duties include helping to manage the dental office, preparing patients for treatment, passing the dentist the proper instruments, polishing teeth, charting patient treatment, exposing and processing dental X-Ray instruments, providing oral hygiene instruction, preparing dental filing material, taking impressions for study purposes or models, and making casts of teeth. The dental assistant program completion will require approximately one year.
Dental assistants can work in private dental offices, dental schools, or hospitals. There will be many opportunities for entry level positions, but some dentists prefer to hire experienced assistants, those who have completed a dental assisting program, or have met state requirements.
- Dental Assistant
Virtually, all dental assistants work in a private dental office. Employment is expected to grow up to 25% through 2022, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.
Median wage for this career is $16.88 hourly, $35,100 annually.