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What is Covered in a Dental Assistant Program?
A dental assistant program in the United States typically covers a variety of topics related to assisting dentists during routine exams and procedures. These topics include patient comfort, infection control, equipment operation, dental radiography (x-rays), dental anatomy, and medical terminology among others. Students learn how to take impressions of teeth for fabrication of crowns or bridges, as well as place fillings and sealants, assist with root canals, clean and polish teeth, expose and develop x-rays, record medical histories and update patients’ digital records. The program also covers office management tasks such as scheduling appointments and collecting payments from patients.
How Long Does Dental Assistant School Take?Dental assisting school typically takes between 9 months and 2 years to complete, depending on the program chosen. Most training programs offer certificates or diplomas and combine classroom instruction with hands-on experience in a dental office setting. Before beginning a dental assisting program, some schools may require that students have completed courses in biology and other health sciences. After finishing the program, most graduates will be qualified to take certification exams which allow them to work as licensed dental assistants in clinical settings across the country.
How do You Become a Dental Assistant?
Becoming a dental assistant requires a combination of formal education and on-the-job training. Most employers prefer to hire dental assistants who have completed a formal dental assistant program from an accredited college or university. These programs typically take about one year to complete, and cover topics such as anatomy, anatomy of the head and neck, office procedures, record keeping, infection control, dental materials, laboratory procedures and radiology. On-the-job training is also a must for those who want to become successful dental assistants. During this time, dental assistants learn how to use equipment and interact with patients. They also get used to working on the dental chair.
What Does a Dental Assistant Do?
A dental assistant is a member of the dental health care team who works directly with dentists, providing chair-side assistance in a variety of clinical settings. They help prepare patients for treatment, assist the dentist during examinations and procedures, sterilize instruments, take x-rays and perform administrative tasks. In addition to providing general support to the dentist, dental assistants may also provide patient education on preventive oral care and inform them of any follow up treatments they may need.
Dental assistants provide important support to dentists and other healthcare professionals. They are responsible for a variety of tasks, including patient care, laboratory duties, office management and sterilization of equipment. Dental assistants help dentists administer treatment by preparing the patient for the procedure, taking x-rays and providing instruments during the treatment. They also educate patients on dental hygiene and provide postoperative care instructions. Additionally, dental assistants may be responsible for scheduling appointments, verifying insurance coverage and billing patients.