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Dental Assistant Training

Dental assistants may work directly with patients to get them familiarized with an upcoming procedure. Assistants may also take and process x-rays, review patients' dental records, and make sure these records are kept up-to-date. Some assistants may help dentists prep for procedures by sterilizing and laying out tools and implements, and may provide assistance and keep the patient's mouth clean while the dentist works. Assistants also advise patients of strategies for promoting good oral health care, especially after a dental procedure.

Is a Career in Dental Assisting Right for Me?

Where Does a Dental Assistant Work?

Working conditions are generally pleasant and clean. There may be times of high pressure when patients are scheduled on an emergency basis, or when a procedure takes more time than anticipated. Since patients are often nervous or apprehensive about going to the dentist, an assistant must be calm and pleasant even during stressful times.

What Does a Dental Assistant Do?

A dental assistant helps the dentist in the clinical treatment of patients. The position is very hands-on. A person interested in dental assisting must be a "people person," and enjoy interacting with patients. They must keep patient care a priority, manage their time well, work well with their hands, and accept instruction from the dentist. Basic duties of a dental assistant may include:

  • Seating patients
  • Making patients feel comfortable
  • Answering questions about procedures
  • Preparing materials that will be needed by the dentist
  • Assisting the dentist throughout the procedures
  • Exposing and developing dental X-rays
  • Sterilizing instruments after a procedure and preparing them for the next patient.
  • Updating a patient's chart after a procedure

Sometimes the actual assisting is called four-handed dental assisting. This means that the assistant will be using both of their hands as well in helping the dentist to make the procedure being performed as smooth and quick as possible.

What Do Dental Assistants May Make?

The salary of a dental assistant may vary with location, number of days worked, and number of years of experience. In general the salary range may be between $22,680 and $47,090 per year as per Bureau of Labor Statistics Data of 2010.

Dental assisting is a vital part of the dental health care field. If you are outgoing, efficient, enjoy working with your hands, and can work calmly under pressure, dental assisting might be a good match for you.


List of Schools Offering Dental Assistant Programs



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            Dental Assisting
            Unitek College , Sacramento

            Unitek College – About Us

            Unitek College™ is a privately held vocational school dedicated to helping you gain the skills needed to advance your career or begin a brand new career. Your training at Unitek College will position you to take advantage of the rising demand for experts in allied health, nursing, and technology professions. Our programs include Medical Assisting, Pharmacy Technician, Dental Assisting, Vocational Nursing, and Bachelor of Science in Nursing: RN-to-BSN Degree Completion.

            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Dental Assisting

            The Metropolitan Institute of Health and Technology (MIHT) is dedicated to educating men and women to serve with confidence in the health and technology industry. MIHT provides career training for students to move forward in their chosen field of study, changing their lives for the better. MIHT strives to provide quality education with affordable tuition. Our staff works to determine the best financial options for students on an individualized level.

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            Dental Assistant
            • Offers career programs in accounting, cosmetology, massage therapy, physical fitness training, and more.
            • Provides hands-on training led by instructors who have relevant, on-the-job experience.
            • Each campus features a public salon and spa for student practice.
            • Campuses are accredited by the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET) and Council on Occupational Education (COE).
            • 11 campuses across California, Texas, Nevada and Idaho, as well as 8 additional Milan Institute of Cosmetology campuses.
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            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Dental Assistant (10-Month diploma program)
            • Has specialized in career training since 1982.
            • Offers beginning to advanced training in computer repair, medical assisting, cosmetology, nursing, and more.
            • Continually maintains programs according to industry needs by working closely with industry experts and employers.
            • Provides well-equipped training facilities to give students the advantage of hands-on training.
            • Its instructors attend seminars and workshops to keep current with new technology and topics.
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            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Dental Assistant
            • Offers programs in some of the fastest growing fields in the healthcare industry
            • 10 unique programs including Nursing, Pharmacy Technician, & Medical Assistant
            • ABHES accredited with 39 campus locations throughout MI, OH, IN, WV, IA, KY, AL & TN
            • Ross offers day & evening schedules for managing family, work & other obligations
            • Financial aid is available for qualified students in the form of loans &  grants
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            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Dental Assisting
            Central Career School , South Plainfield
            • Has classes regularly reviewed by a Program Advisory Committee composed of employers and professionals currently active in the industry, to ensure relevance and curriculum quality.
            • Located in South Plainfield, New Jersey.
            • Offers courses in dental assisting, medical assisting, business, technology, and more.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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            • Accredited
            • Financial Aid
            Diploma - Dental Assistant

            Get hands-on training with Brookline College. We offer diploma and degree programs in the areas of health care, business, nursing, criminal justice, paralegal, and computer security. We understand that today's student is busy with many responsibilities, so we offer day, evening, and online classes, giving you options to fit school into your schedule.

            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Dental Assistant Diploma
            • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media.
            • Listed as a 2015 Best for Vets school in the Career & Technical College category by Military Times.
            • Offers programs in health science, business, legal studies, technology, and skilled trades such as HVAC and building maintenance &    repair.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • 3 campuses located in Virginia, South Carolina, and Florida.
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            Dental Assistant

            The goal of Virginia College lies in its responsibility to its students, the technical and business communities, and the general citizenry. We have a long history of offering new direction to students.

            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Certificate - Dental Assisting
            • Offers a program that translates work and military experience into college credit, transfers in credit from other college programs, and offers the flexibility of day, evening and online coursework.
            • Provides in-person tutoring, IT support, access to library resources, and job placement assistant for graduates.
            • Features a new blended-learning curriculum, which involves a mix of campus and online courses.
            • Has 11 campuses across Southern California, Washington, and Alaska, and online courses with campus support. 
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            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
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            Programs under Dental Technician

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