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I choose dental assisting because I have always wanted to work in a
Health profession. I enjoy working with people and I like the “team
atmosphere” approach of a dental office. Dental assisting is becoming an
exciting career as dental laws are changing and the role of the assistant is
increasing in regards to patient care. There are also many jobs available for
dental assistants and also a wide variety of options. Dental assistants can choose to work in private practices, insurance companies, federal and state funded health programs, public health departments as well as teaching community colleges or universities.
It is possible to become a dental assistant with no formal training. However most job duties would include in cleaning treatment rooms, setting up rooms for procedures and basic dental assisting.
There are one year traing programs available for dental assistants. To enter these programs a high school diploma or GED is required. This is a full time program. Classes are usually from eight a.m. to five p.m. Monday thru Friday. In the last eight weeks of the program, students are assigned to work in local dental offices to gain additional experience. A minimal high school GPA of 2.0 is required to enter the program at community colleges. Science courses are helpful but not required. Upon satisfactory completion of an accredited program, or having met the work experience requirements, and holding current cardiopulmonary resuscitation certification you are eligible to sit for the certification examination given by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Examinations are given in several specialty areas like, chairside assisting, practice management and oral surgery assisting. If you are successful and pass the examination you may use the title Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) followed by your area of specialization.
Certification carries with it the prestige of knowledge and the ability to apply it; however it is in no sense a degree, nor does it hold any legal status except in those states recognizing it under their dental practice acts.
After completing the one year general dentistry program UNC-CH also offers additional six month training courses, if a dental assistant would like to specialize in an specific field such as, periodontics, prosthodontics, orthodontics, endodontics, pedidontics.
A pedodontist specializes in the preventive in therapeutic care of children from birth through adolescence and also treats people with handicaps and special needs. A prosthodontist fits and designs bridge work and dentures to replace missing teeth. They also design substitutes for missing oral tissues. A orthodontist prescribes and fits appliances to straighten crooked or badly spaced teeth and to correct the bite and alignment of the jaws. . An Endodontist treats disease of the dental pulp, usually with root canal therapy. A periodontist which treats gum disease. A public health dentist works with communities as a public educator in the prevention and treatment of dental disease.
Currently, there is a high demand for good dental assistants. As time goes on, the role of the dental assistant is changing. Almost every year it seems as if they have an increased role with patient care. For example in the past four years it has become legal for dental assistants to polish teeth. The range of duties varies from state to state.
The following is a list of duties that are allowed by a certified dental assistant: making radiographic exposures, taking impressions for opposing study casts, retracting gingival prior to impression procedures, placing and removing periodontal and surgical dressings, removing sutures, applying topical anesthetics, assisting in the administration of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) or sedation, providing oral health insurance, applying anticariogentic agents topically, taking impressions for cast restorations, taking impressions for space maintainers, orthodontic appliances and Occlusal guards, placing and removing rubber dams, placing and removing sedative or temporary restorations and crowns, removing excess cement form coronal surfaces of teeth, preparing teeth for bonding by etching, applying pit and fissure sealants, applying cavity liners and bases and performing additional functions that may be delegated within specialties.
Upon satisfactory completion of an accredited program, or having met the work experience requirements, and holding current cardiopulmonary resuscitation certification you are eligible to sit for the certification examination given by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Examinations are given in several specialty areas like, chairside assisting, practice management and oral surgery assisting. If
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Dentistry, Medicine, Health care, Dental assistant, Prosthodontology, Specialty, Dentist, Orthodontics, Endodontics, Prosthodontics, Dental hygienist, Dental degree
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