The demand for dental assistants is growing quickly and is expected to grow over the next several years. Being a dental assistant can be a rewarding career choice with opportunities for growth and job security.
But how much do dental assistants make, and is it worth investing in the education to become a dental assistant?
Perhaps you’re looking for a career path or a career change. If you’re thinking about becoming a dental assistant, here’s what you need to know about the salary of a dental assistant.
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What do Dental Assistants Do?
Dental assistants work with dentists to assist them with various needs. Many of them work in a practice or clinic full time.
While dental assistants do assist the dentist, they serve a variety of roles in the dental office. As a dental assistant you might be responsible for:
- Taking molds or impressions
- Talking with patients about their procedures
- Prepping for oral surgery
- Giving patients oral education
- Cleaning and sterilizing equipment
- Filling out paperwork or other administrative tasks
Most often, the main job is to assist the dentist, but you shouldn’t rule out other responsibilities. There is more info here on learning about other responsibilities dental assistants have.
How much Do Dental Assistants Make?
The average dental assistant salary fluctuates based on several factors. The national average salary for dental assistants is between $39,000 and $42,000 for full-time work.
Other factors like education, location, and how long you’ve been in the field will influence your pay. Dental assistants with longer careers may make more than someone just starting out. It also depends on where you work and how much the dental practice pays.
Being a dental assistant comes with several benefits, like health and dental insurance, retirement plans, flexible schedules, other types of insurance, and more. If you want to pursue other types of careers in the dental field, like being a dental hygenist, a career as a dental assistant is a great place to start.
Getting Started With A Dental Assistant Career
In order to become a dental assistant, you do need an education. Most dental assistants need to finish a dental assistant accreditated program in order to qualify for jobs.
Thankfully, you can finish a dental assistant program in several months or up to two years depending on the intensity of your program. These schools work with you to ensure you’re ready to enter the job force, and many students have jobs right after graduation.
Apart from being educated, you’ll need other soft skills like listening, critical thinking, communicating, customer service, friendliness, administrative skills, and more.
Is Being A Dental Assistant Right for You?
When you’re thinking about a career change, you’re right to ask the question how much do dental assistants make. While pay is an important factor in making sure you choose the right career, it’s also important that you’re fulfilled in your career choice. Dental assistants can make a difference in the lives of patients and impact the rest of their lives.
Do you want to get started on your education journey? Visit our Education page today for more tips and advice.
Alice Christina, a seasoned health writer, combines her passion for wellness with a strong foundation in evidence-based research. She crafts insightful content that empowers readers to make informed health decisions. Alice's expertise shines through her concise and reliable health articles.
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