Is a Career as a Dental Assistant Right for You?
There will always be a demand for dentists, dental hygienists and dental assistants because people will always need to care for their teeth. There are many appealing facets to this profession, for example dentists make an excellent salary. Their hygienists and assistants can also earn top pay.
It is crucial not to confuse a dental assistant with a dental hygienist, as these are two separate jobs with different qualifications required.
Dental assistants attend school for a shorter period of time than hygienists, therefore they make less on average and their job duties are somewhat different.
The dental assistant has many tasks to perform in a day's work. He or she may capture or develop X-ray images, taking patient vital signs and collecting data.
They also prepare rooms and equipment for new patients, take impressions of teeth, instruct patients on good home dental care and more.
There are so many different tasks and you get to see so many different people in one day it is unlikely you'll get bored on the job.
Education requirements are quite attainable for most individuals who want to pursue this career, whether they are fresh out of high school or already a working adult with a family ready to change careers.
There are colleges and trade schools with dental assistant programs where you can earn a certificate upon finishing the course.
There is also a national exam called the CDA exam that upon successful completion will give the assistant certification on a national level. This gives you a better chance of finding a well-paying job in this field anywhere in the country.
You may start out as a dental assistant, then choose to continue your education in the field. Many employers now offer tuition reimbursement for employees who are going to school to further their position with the company.
For example you may want to transition from assistant to hygienist or even someday become a dentist. If you already work as an assistant during the day, there are night courses and even distance learning home study schools that allow you to earn your degree around your current schedule.
A career in dental assisting is rewarding because you get to help others, and can be lucrative for you. Many dentists offer their employees handsome benefit packages in addition to their pay.
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