How to Become a Dental Assistant in Carrollton Georgia
Selecting the right dental assistant program near Carrollton GA is an essential first step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must assess and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than choosing the dental assistant program with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the one that is nearest to your residence. There are other significant factors to take into account as well, for instance the program’s accreditation and reputation. Your initial step is to decide which of the two credentials you are most interested in getting training for, which may depend on the amount of time and money that you have to invest. The most typical dental assistant program usually takes about 12 months to finish for a certificate or diploma. On the other hand dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to accomplish. Obviously with the prolonged training comes more expense. We will discuss all of these issues and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental assistant schools you are evaluating later in this article. But first, let’s look at the roles of dental assistants and further discuss the training options offered.
The Role of a Dental Assistant in Carrollton GA
Dental assistants are an essential component of any Carrollton GA dental practice and can undertake a myriad of functions. Their fundamental job description is to furnish assistance to the admin staff and the dentists. Or simply put, to help keep the practice working efficiently. A number of dental assistants opt to specialize and acquire certification in a particular area, for instance periodontics. Even so the majority of assistants perform any job that they are called upon to fulfill, such as:
- Setting and verifying appointments
- Readying patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Preparing and sterilizing instruments for dentists
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Supplying instruments to dentists during procedures
- Preparing X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Ordering office and dental supplies
Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants deviate by state, so check with the Georgia dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants handling X-ray machines most likely will need to be certified and licensed. Many dental assistants who are either required or opt to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) examination offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Assistant Education Programs near Carrollton GA
Dental assistant courses are provided at Georgia junior colleges as well as technical or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most frequent credential acquired is the certificate, which ordinarily takes about a year to complete. There are fewer Associate Degree programs offered, and they furnish a more comprehensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assistant classes. These programs can take anywhere from two to as long as three years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly every state. They are also offered in Georgia trade schools and community colleges. Whether you are pursuing earning a certificate or a degree as a dental assistant, there will be a clinical aspect to the training as well. A number of programs also sponsor internships with Carrollton GA dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Assistant Classes
Enrolling in an online dental assistant course might be a great option for obtaining your education. Just remember that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be provided via your desktop computer in the convenience of your Carrollton GA home or anywhere else on your tablet or laptop. For those working while going to college, online dental classes make education much more accessible. Some may even charge lower tuition costs than their traditional competitors. And additional expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened as well. The practical training can often be completed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything necessary to receive the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this mode of education, you might find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist school is the ideal option for you.
Topics to Cover With Dental Assistant Colleges
Once you have picked the dental specialization and kind of credential you would like to obtain, you can begin the process of comparing Georgia programs and schools. As we covered at the start of this article, a number of prospective students start by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they search for some online options as well. Even though these may be relevant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the Carrollton GA area programs you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. Toward that end, we have furnished a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the best dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Assistant College Accredited? There are a number of important reasons why you should only select an accredited dental assistant college. If you are intending to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a requirement in virtually all states. To qualify to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the education you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Employers in Carrollton GA often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not obtainable for non-accredited Georgia schools.
Is The Correct Dental Program Available? You can decide to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just make sure that the Carrollton GA school you select has the program that you want. However, bear in mind that even if a school has a good reputation and accreditation does not mean each one of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited school may have a strong accredited dental hygienist program, but might have a weaker or non-accredited dental assistant program. So if you are primarily interested in a dental assistant degree, clearly it would not be the right school for you.
Is Plenty of Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is a vital part of any dental training program. This is true for the online college options as well. Most dental schools have associations with regional dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the college you select offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the Carrollton GA area college you choose offers clinical rotation in an area dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are looking at have an internship program. Internships are probably the best method to obtain hands-on, clinical experience in a professional Carrollton GA dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental assistant schools need assistance getting their first job. Find out if the programs you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Carrollton GA dental profession in addition to large networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Check with the Carrollton GA area schools you are reviewing how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally provide a more personal environment for learning where students have greater access to the teachers. On the other hand, larger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If practical, find out if you can monitor a few classes at the college that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the degree of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental assistant schools can differ in cost based on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the schools and whether they are public or private also have an impact. But along with the tuition there are other significant costs which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when examining the cost of schools, remember to add all of the expenses associated with your education. The majority of schools have financial assistance offices, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Carrollton GA.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental school, you need to verify that the assistant program offers classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and must attend classes near your Carrollton GA home at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes due to work, illness or family issues.
Considering Attending Dental Assistant School near Carrollton GA?
Following is some interesting background information about Carrollton Georgia that you may find helpful.
Carrollton, Georgia is a city in the north west region of Georgia, about 45 miles west of Atlanta near the Alabama state line. It is the county seat of Carroll County which is included in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area. Historically, Carrollton has been a commercial center for several mostly rural counties in both Georgia and Alabama. It is the home of the University of West Georgia and West Georgia Technical College. The 2016 United States Census estimates placed the city's population at 26,562.
Carrollton is located near the center of Carroll County at 33°34′51″N 85°4′36″W / 33.58083°N 85.07667°W / 33.58083; -85.07667 (33.580912, -85.076704). The Little Tallapoosa River flows through the northwestern part of the city. U.S. Route 27 passes through the city center, leading north 9 miles (14 km) to Interstate 20 in Bremen and south 42 miles (68 km) to LaGrange.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Carrollton has a total area of 22.8 square miles (59.1 km2), of which 22.3 square miles (57.7 km2) is land and 0.54 square miles (1.4 km2), or 2.37%, is water.
Select the Best Dental Assistant Program near Carrollton GA
Choosing the right dental assistant program is imperative if you intend to take the CDA exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are several options available to acquire your training and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental assistant. You can obtain your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools generally obtain a Certificate. Dental Assistants usually require roughly one year of study prior to entering the work force. When earning a certificate or degree you can elect to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of education or credential you choose to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the appropriate choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Carrollton GA.
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