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Become A Dental Assisting Instructor

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Working As A Dental Assisting Instructor

  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Getting Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Hazardous Environment

  • Repetitive

  • $67,272

    Average Salary

What Does A Dental Assisting Instructor Do

Dental assistants perform many tasks, ranging from patient care and taking x rays to recordkeeping and scheduling appointments. Their duties vary by state and by the dentists’ offices where they work. 

Duties

Dental assistants typically do the following:

  • Ensure that patients are comfortable in the dental chair
  • Prepare patients and the work area for treatments and procedures
  • Sterilize dental instruments
  • Help dentists by handing them instruments during procedures
  • Keep patients’ mouths dry by using suction hoses and other equipment
  • Instruct patients in proper oral hygiene
  • Process x rays and complete lab tasks, under the direction of a dentist
  • Keep records of dental treatments
  • Schedule patient appointments
  • Work with patients on billing and payment

Assistants who perform lab tasks, such as taking impressions of a patient’s teeth, work under the direction of a dentist. They may prepare materials for dental impressions or to create temporary crowns.

All dental assistants complete certain tasks, such as helping dentists with procedures and keeping patient records. Dental assistants are allowed to perform the following procedures in some states:

  • Coronal polishing
  • Sealant application
  • Fluoride application
  • Topical anesthetic application

Coronal polishing, which means removing soft deposits such as plaque, gives teeth a cleaner appearance. In sealant application, a dental assistant paints a thin, plastic substance over teeth that seals out food particles and acid-producing bacteria to keep teeth from developing cavities. Fluoride application, in which fluoride is put directly on the teeth, is another anticavity measure. Some dental assistants may be qualified to apply topical anesthetic to an area of a patient’s mouth, temporarily numbing the area to help prepare a patient for procedures.

Each state regulates the scope of practice for dental assistants.

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How To Become A Dental Assisting Instructor

There are several possible paths to becoming a dental assistant. Some states require assistants to graduate from an accredited program and pass an exam. In other states, there are no formal educational requirements.

Education

Some states require dental assistants to graduate from an accredited program and pass an exam. Most programs are offered by community colleges, although they also may be offered by vocational or technical schools. Most programs take about 1 year to complete and lead to a certificate or diploma. Programs that last 2 years are less common and lead to an associate’s degree. The Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA), part of the American Dental Association, accredited nearly 300 dental assisting training programs in 2015.

Accredited programs include classroom and laboratory work in which students learn about teeth, gums, jaws, and other areas that dentists work on and the instruments that dentists use. These programs also include supervised practical experience.

High school students interested in a career as a dental assistant should take courses in biology, chemistry, and anatomy.

Training

Dental assistants who do not have formal education in dental assisting may learn their duties through on-the-job training. A dental assistant or dentist in the office teaches the new assistant dental terminology, the names of the instruments, how to complete daily tasks, how to interact with patients, and other activities necessary to help keep the dental office running smoothly.

Important Qualities

Detail oriented. Dental assistants must follow specific rules and protocols, such as infection control procedures, when helping dentists treat patients. Assistants also must be aware of what tasks they are allowed to complete in the state where they work.

Dexterity. Dental assistants must be good at working with their hands. They generally work in tight quarters on a small part of the body, using very precise tools and instruments.

Interpersonal skills. Dental assistants must work closely with dentists and patients. Sometimes, patients are in extreme pain and/or mental stress, so the assistant should be sensitive to their emotions.

Listening skills. Dental assistants should be able to listen to patients and other healthcare workers. They need to follow directions from a dentist or dental hygienist, so they can help treat patients and do tasks, such as taking an x ray.

Organizational skills. Dental assistants should have excellent organizational skills. They should have the correct tools in place for a dentist or dental hygienist to use when treating a patient.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Some states require dental assistants to be licensed, registered, or certified. In other states, there are no formal requirements to become an entry-level dental assistant.

States that allow assistants to perform expanded duties, such as coronal polishing, require that they be licensed, registered, or hold certifications from the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB). To earn certification from DANB, applicants must pass an exam. The educational requirements for DANB certification are that dental assistants must either have graduated from an accredited program or have a high school diploma and complete the required amount of work experience. Applicants also must have current certification in CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation).

In addition, many states require assistants to meet specific education or training requirements in order to work with radiography (x ray) equipment. Requirements vary by state. Contact state boards of dentistry for specific requirements.

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Dental Assisting Instructor Career Paths

Dental Assisting Instructor
Lead Dental Assistant Office Manager
Administrative Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Dentist Clinical Director Service Director
Assistant General Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Program Director General Manager
Business Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Instructor Assistant Director Office Manager
Business Office Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Product Manager General Manager
Center Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Surgical Assistant Surgical Technician Staff Nurse
Clinical Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Dental Office Manager Finance Coordinator Practice Manager
Compliance Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Front Office Assistant Phlebotomist Adjunct Instructor
Dean
5 Yearsyrs
Hygienist Dental Hygienist
Dental Office Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Dentist General Dentist
Dental Services Director
9 Yearsyrs
Program Director Adjunct Instructor Instructor
Education Director
7 Yearsyrs
Instructor Program Manager General Manager
Facilities Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Oral Surgery Assistant Treatment Coordinator Medical Social Worker
Field Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Front Office Assistant Home Health Aid Direct Support Professional
Home Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Office Manager Human Resources Coordinator
Human Resources Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Dental Office Manager Front Desk Coordinator Phlebotomist
Laboratory Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Office Manager Account Manager Sales Manager
Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Surgical Assistant Office Manager
Practice Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Lead Dental Assistant Front Office Manager
Resident Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Marketing Manager Operations Manager
Service Director
10 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Dental Assisting Instructor?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Dental Assistant 3.4 years
Dental Internship 0.6 years
Top Careers Before Dental Assisting Instructor
Cashier 4.3%
Assistant 3.4%
Volunteer 2.2%
Teller 1.7%
Internship 1.6%
Top Careers After Dental Assisting Instructor
Internship 3.0%
Instructor 3.0%
Assistant 2.6%
Cashier 2.6%
Server 2.3%

Do you work as a Dental Assisting Instructor?

Dental Assisting Instructor Demographics

Gender

Female

84.6%

Male

13.9%

Unknown

1.5%
Ethnicity

White

60.2%

Hispanic or Latino

19.3%

Black or African American

10.5%

Asian

6.2%

Unknown

3.8%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

43.3%

Polish

16.7%

Portuguese

5.0%

German

5.0%

Russian

5.0%

French

3.3%

Arabic

3.3%

Italian

3.3%

Lithuanian

1.7%

Estonian

1.7%

Chinese

1.7%

Ukrainian

1.7%

Hebrew

1.7%

Braille

1.7%

Carrier

1.7%

Tibetan

1.7%

Korean

1.7%
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Dental Assisting Instructor Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

15.6%

Everest Institute

5.6%

Ferris State University

5.6%

Bridgemont Community and Technical College

5.6%

University of Central Florida

5.6%

Kaplan University

5.6%

Concorde Career College

5.6%

Ashford University

4.4%

University of Southern Indiana

4.4%

Camden County College

4.4%

Southern New Hampshire University

4.4%

Liberty University

4.4%

Capella University

4.4%

Northern Virginia Community College

4.4%

Troy University

3.3%

Bridgerland Applied Technology College

3.3%

Strayer University

3.3%

Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis

3.3%

United Education Institute - Huntington Park Campus

3.3%

Kean University

3.3%
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Majors

Dental Assisting

45.2%

Business

8.9%

Dentistry

4.0%

Nuclear And Industrial Radiologic Technologies

3.8%

Psychology

3.8%

Advanced Dentistry And Oral Sciences

3.7%

Education

3.7%

Health Care Administration

3.7%

Nursing

3.0%

Biology

3.0%

Management

2.8%

General Studies

2.4%

Elementary Education

2.3%

Medical Assisting Services

2.3%

Accounting

1.6%

Health Sciences And Services

1.4%

Communication

1.2%

Sociology

1.2%

Criminal Justice

1.0%

Counseling Psychology

1.0%
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Degrees

Other

36.6%

Bachelors

20.0%

Associate

14.5%

Certificate

11.8%

Masters

7.9%

Diploma

5.4%

Doctorate

2.7%

License

1.2%
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Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Dental Assisting Instructor Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Dental Assisting Instructor EFC Trade Inc. III Wayne, NJ Nov 17, 2014 $59,354
Dental Assisting Instructor EFC Trade Inc. III Wayne, NJ Nov 17, 2014 $59,150
Dental Assisting Instructor Lake Washington Institute of Technology Kirkland, WA Apr 05, 2016 $56,062
Dental Assisting Instructor Lake Washington Institute of Technology Kirkland, WA May 04, 2013 $51,939
Dental Assisting Instructor Lake Washington Technical College Kirkland, WA May 04, 2010 $50,915
Dental Assisting Instructor Miller-Motte Business College, Inc. Greenville, NC Jan 15, 2011 $41,912

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Top Skills for A Dental Assisting Instructor

  1. Dental Procedures
  2. Dentists
  3. Alginate Impressions
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Organized dental activities for dental students who required assistance with dental procedures.
  • Worked with numerous amounts of dentists both general and specialty practices.
  • Scheduled and incorporated student dental labs.
  • Conducted developmental testing and facilitated training to Dental Assistant students for a curriculum In an educational institution.
  • Worked closely with dentist and dental assistant Assisted with reprocessing of treatment rooms, sterilization room, and resin procedures

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Top 10 Best States for Dental Assisting Instructors

  1. Alaska
  2. Minnesota
  3. Oregon
  4. Virginia
  5. Massachusetts
  6. Arizona
  7. North Dakota
  8. New Hampshire
  9. District of Columbia
  10. Washington
  • (16 jobs)
  • (66 jobs)
  • (106 jobs)
  • (227 jobs)
  • (74 jobs)
  • (77 jobs)
  • (5 jobs)
  • (6 jobs)
  • (35 jobs)
  • (136 jobs)

Top Dental Assisting Instructor Employers

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