If providing excellent patient care within a medical field sounds attractive, you may want to consider a dental assisting career.
As a dental assistant, you would be assisting the dentist with direct patient care and be involved in providing dental care in a variety of settings. Whether it is for regular checkup appointments or surgical visits, your tasks would include taking x-rays, preparing patients for their procedure, as well as some laboratory duties. As many people feel apprehensive about a visit to the dentist, another one of your roles would be to make patients feel at ease and provide support throughout the appointment.
You could work in various settings such as hospitals, private clinics, or in dental pediatrics. This fulfilling career never gets boring as day-to-day tasks are varied. In addition, this is a growing field as dentists are hiring more assistants; job prospects are great and so are pay scales.
To prepare for a dental assisting career, you need to focus on getting excellent grades in high school, with a particular focus on science courses. As many post-secondary institutions offer limited enrollment into dental programs, getting good grades will increase your chances of being accepted. The first part of your education towards this career will focus on theoretical concepts. The second part will be practical, where you will learn how to apply your skills in a dental environment. The Dental Assisting National Board, Inc. offers two certification streams: Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) or Certified Orthodontics Assistant (COA). Once you obtain your credentials, you will be ready to apply for state registration according to the area in which you wish to practice. You may also choose to pursue an associate degree in Dental Assisting. Since states requirements may vary, inquire about the rules before enrolling in any program to ensure that you will be allowed to practice in your area of choice.
A career in dental assisting will suit you if you love helping people, care for their well-being, and have a passion for oral health.
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