How to Become a Dental Assistant in Cedartown Georgia
Picking the ideal dental assistant school near Cedartown GA is an essential first step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must evaluate and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than picking the dental assistant college with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the one that is closest to your home. There are other important issues to consider as well, for instance the school’s reputation and accreditation. Your initial step is to decide which of the 2 credentials you are most interested in receiving training for, which may depend on the amount of time and money that you have to commit. The most typical dental assistant program normally takes about one year to complete for a diploma or certificate. Meanwhile dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to complete. Naturally with the lengthier training comes more cost. We will cover all of these issues and additional questions that you should be asking the dental assistant schools you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the roles of dental assistants and further discuss the training options available.
The Function of a Dental Assistant in Cedartown GA
Dental assistants are an integral component of any Cedartown GA dental office and can perform a multitude of duties. Their primary job description is to provide support to the dentists and the administrative staff. In other words, to help keep the practice running efficiently. A number of dental assistants opt to specialize and receive certification in a specific area, such as orthodontics. Even so most assistants perform any job that they are called upon to fulfill, including:
- Scheduling and confirming appointments
- Preparing patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Sterilizing and preparing instruments for dentists
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Providing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Readying X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Ordering office and dental supplies
Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants vary by state, so check with the Georgia dental board for your state’s mandates. Assistants handling X-ray machines more than likely will need to be licensed and certified. A large number of dental assistants who are either required or opt to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Assistant Education Options near Cedartown GA
Dental assistant courses are available at Georgia junior colleges along with technical or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most common credential earned is the certificate, which usually takes about one year to finish. There are less Associate Degree programs available, and they provide a more comprehensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assistant classes. These programs can take anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to complete and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly every state. They are also offered in Georgia community colleges and technical schools. Whether you are interested in earning a certificate or a degree as a dental assistant, there will be a practical component to the training also. Some programs also sponsor internships with Cedartown GA dental practices or dentists.
Dental Assistant Online Programs
Selecting an online dental assistant program may be a good option for obtaining your education. Just keep in mind that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available via your personal computer in the convenience of your Cedartown GA home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while attending school, online dental classes make education far more accessible. Some may even have lower tuition rates than their on-campus counterparts. And additional expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened as well. The clinical training can usually be completed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to obtain the proper education is furnished. If you have the dedication for this style of education, you may find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online school is the best choice for you.
Topics to Ask Dental Assistant Programs
After you have picked the dental specialty and type of credential you wish to obtain, you can start the procedure of comparing Georgia programs and schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many prospective students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the schools. Maybe they look for some online alternatives also. Although these are important initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you need to ask of the Cedartown GA area colleges you are comparing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have furnished a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Assistant Program Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental assistant program. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in nearly all states. To qualify to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the training you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in Cedartown GA frequently prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not offered for non-accredited Georgia colleges.
Is The Appropriate Dental Program Offered? You can opt to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just make sure that the Cedartown GA college you select has the program that’s right for you. However, keep in mind that even if a school has an exceptional reputation and accreditation does not mean each one of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited college may have a strong accredited dental hygienist program, but may have a weaker or non-accredited dental assistant program. So if you are only interested in a dental assistant degree, naturally it would not be the best school for you.
Is Enough Clinical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is an important part of any dental training program. This applies for the online school options as well. A number of dental programs have relationships with regional dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the school you enroll in offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently want to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the Cedartown GA area college you select offers clinical rotation in a regional dental practice that focuses on dental treatment for children.
Are Internships Available? Verify if the dental schools you are evaluating sponsor internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the most effective method to get hands-on, practical experience in a professional Cedartown GA dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students develop professional relationships in the local dentistry community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Most graduating students of dental assistant colleges need help landing their first job. Ask if the programs you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Cedartown GA dental community as well as large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Smaller? Find out from the Cedartown GA area colleges you are reviewing how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes usually offer a more intimate setting for training where students have greater access to the teachers. On the other hand, large classes tend to be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can monitor a couple of classes at the school that you are leaning toward so that you can experience first hand the amount of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental assistant programs can vary in cost based on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, for instance the reputations of the colleges and whether they are private or public also come into play. But along with the tuition there are other significant expenses 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 colleges, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so make sure to find out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Cedartown GA.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental school, you must make sure that the assistant program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while acquiring your education and have to attend classes near your Cedartown GA home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online college, you will still have to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up policy is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending Dental Assistant School near Cedartown GA?
Following is some interesting background information about Cedartown Georgia that you may find helpful.
Cedartown is a city in Polk County, Georgia, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 9,750. The city is the county seat of Polk County. Cedartown is the principal city of and is included in the Cedartown, Georgia Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Gainesville, Georgia-Alabama (part) Combined Statistical Area.
The Cedartown Commercial Historic District is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Cedartown Waterworks-Woman's Building-Big Spring Park Historic District is also listed along with the Northwest Cedartown Historic District and South Philpot Street Historic District.
Cherokee and Creek Native Americans first inhabited the area known as Cedar Valley. The Cherokee people had established a village there in the 1830s after the Native Americans were forced out on the Trail of Tears. The settlement was named for the red cedar timber near the site.
Pick the Best Dental Assistant College near Cedartown GA
Selecting the ideal dental assistant program is imperative if you intend to take the CDA exam or, if required in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are several options offered to acquire your education and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental assistant. You can obtain your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these programs usually earn a Certificate. Dental Assistants normally require approximately 1 year of study before they enter the work force. When obtaining a certificate or degree you can choose to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of education or credential you choose to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the appropriate choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Cedartown GA.
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