Is a Dental Assistant a Good Career?

If you want to shift career, you might consider dental assisting. But is a dental assistant a good career?

It’s in the healthcare field. Thus, you should expect that the pay is excellent and the job prospects are high. However, you have to undergo training for it. Don’t fret though as there are various ways to earn the credentials to get this job.

Employment for this job position is growing. In fact, it is growing faster than the average for other occupations. And the pay can range from $22,000 to $45,000 a year.

But why should you consider this career?

Easy to Enter

One of the many reasons some individuals are opting for this career is that it’s easy to get into this path. Why? You only need a high school diploma to help you get started. From there, you’ll undergo a training. Several schools offer dental assistant course or programs that can give you a significant edge in this job market.

Excellent Working Conditions

If you want to work in a clean environment, then this job occupation is a great choice. Dental assistants are expected to work in well-lit environments. They wear eyewear, masks and other tools that protect themselves against infectious diseases. If you opted to work full-time, you’ll work from 35 to 40 hours a week. It might include weekends or evenings.

Career Advancement

Most dental assistants won’t remain in that position for the rest of their career life. Some of them will be promoted as an office manager or sales representatives for dental products. Others would study to become dental hygienists. The opportunities are aplenty. Thus, it really depends on what you want to accomplish in your career.

Attractive Benefits

Dental assistants are usually hired by private practitioners. And these practitioners offer their dental assistants paid vacation time. Many assistants are receiving medical coverage and even retirement plans. And of course, they have dental care as part of their employee benefit.

Are you a good candidate for it?

Not all individuals can be a good candidate for this position. If you don’t have the compassion to patients, then you can’t be an effective dental assistant. This position also requires you to have a soft skill set. If you have experience in the field of customer service, then that would be great. You also need to be compassionate because most of the time, you’ll be comforting patients who are in a great deal of pain.

You also need to have a good bedside manner. It’s also a huge advantage if you could multitask effectively. Then, ensure that you can work as part of the team. Keep in mind that you will be working in a dental office where a team of dental professionals is present.

Dental assistant programs may need nine to 12 months of training. The training program will include health and safety, infection control training and several others. Most of all, you have to pass the Dental Assisting National Board examination so you’ll be working as a certified dental assistant. Getting certified will increase your chances of being hired.