If you are considering a career change and looking at dental assisting, you have made a smart choice for your future. Dental assistants are in high demand with excellent job security. The schedules are stable and the work is satisfying and never dull. To become a dental assistant, however, you will need a training program that teaches the specialized skills you’ll need to be successful.

Man sitting in dentists chair with dentist sitting next to him and dental assistant standing on the opposite side

Academic Skills You Need to Be a Dental Assistant

You can enter a dental assistant training program with only a high school diploma or GED, but you will need to take the right classes to give you the knowledge to be a dental assistant. Dental assistants will take classes to orient them to the dental field, dental anatomy and physiology, and dental charting. Dental work requires attention to detail and dental assisting students will learn everything they need to know in a training program designed to teach them about dental care and dental anatomy.

Technical Skills You Need to Be a Dental Assistant

Dental care is complex. A dental assistant will need comprehensive knowledge of multiple procedures and the equipment and instruments necessary for each procedure. Dental assistants must know how to use the many different tools and materials present for dental procedures, including blood pressure machines, x-rays, dental impression kits, sterilization equipment, and more. Dental assistants are often asked to have CPR certification or x-ray licensing. A strong dental assistant training program with a comprehensive class curriculum and clinical practice will help you learn all the technical skills you will need. When you look for a dental assistant training program, look for one that offers specialized classes in dental instrumentation, dental materials, x-ray techniques, sterilization and infection control, and advanced clinical procedures.

Experience Needed by Dental Assistants

Dental work can be physically demanding and requires fine motor skills. In a dental assistant training program, you should have clinics where you can practice the specialized skills you learned in class in real world situations. Many dental assisting programs provide an externship experience where you can hone the physical and fine motor specialized skills you will need to assist the dental staff with procedures.

Getting the Right Training to Become a Dental Assistant

During a dental assistant training program, you will have academic classes as well as labs to develop clinical skills. In this well-designed program, you will learn everything you need to know to work as a dental assistant. Classes and clinics include dental anatomy and physiology, dental charting, sterilization and infection control, dental X-ray techniques, instrumentation, dental materials, and some clinical procedures. The curriculum is comprehensive enough to prepare you for any skill you will need in your work as a dental assistant. After you complete your training program and externship, you will have the skills and relationships to begin your work as a dental assistant.

Dental assistants will need specialized skills, but a good dental assistant training program can help shape you into a great dental assistant with all the training you’ll need to start your new career. You can leave your dental assistant training program knowing that you have all the skills and knowledge you’ll need to make a difference in the lives of your patients. To learn more about our comprehensive dental assistant training program, contact South Florida Dental Assisting School today!