How to Become a Dental Assistant in Greenville Georgia
Choosing the right dental assistant program near Greenville GA is an essential initial step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you need to assess and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than selecting the dental assistant school with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the one that is closest to your residence. There are other crucial issues to take into account also, including the college’s reputation and accreditation. Your initial step is to decide which of the 2 credentials you are most interested in getting training for, which may be contingent on the amount of money and time that you have to commit. The most common dental assistant program normally takes about 1 year to finish for a certificate or diploma. Meanwhile dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to finish. Obviously with the prolonged training comes more expense. We will explore all of these concerns and additional questions that you need to be asking the dental assistant schools you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s look at the duties of dental assistants and further discuss the training options available.
The Job of a Dental Assistant in Greenville GA
Dental assistants are an indispensable part of any Greenville GA dental office and can carry out a variety of duties. Their main job description is to provide support 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 example pediatrics. Even so the majority of assistants carry out any duty that they are asked to complete, for example:
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Preparing patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Sterilizing and preparing instruments for dentists
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Handing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Prepping X-ray machines and handling X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants vary by state, so consult with the Georgia dental board for your state’s mandates. Assistants handling X-ray machines most likely will need to be certified and licensed. Many dental assistants who are either required or choose to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Assistant Training Options near Greenville GA
Dental assistant programs are available at Georgia junior colleges as well as technical or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most common credential earned is the certificate, which generally takes about one year to finish. There are less Associate Degree programs available, and they furnish a more expansive education, including general subjects in addition to the dental assisting courses. These programs can take anywhere from two to as long as three years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in almost 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 Greenville GA dentists or dental practices.
Dental Assistant Online Schools
Choosing an online dental assistant school may be a great alternative for obtaining your training. Just remember that the program will not be completely 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 Greenville GA home or anywhere else on your tablet or laptop. For those working while going to college, online dental programs make education far more accessible. Some may even charge lower tuition fees than their traditional counterparts. And additional expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened also. The clinical training can typically be completed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to get the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this method of education, you might find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist college is the ideal option for you.
Points to Ask Dental Assistant Colleges
Once you have picked the dental specialty and kind of credential you wish to earn, you can begin the process of comparing Georgia programs and schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, many prospective students start by checking out the location and the cost of the colleges. Perhaps they look for several online options also. Although these may be important initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the Greenville GA area schools you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have provided a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Assistant School Accredited? There are a number of good reasons why you should only select an accredited dental assistant program. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in almost all states. In order to take the Certified Dental Assistant examination, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the training you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in Greenville GA typically prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, often they are not obtainable for non-accredited Georgia schools.
Is The Right Dental Program Available? You can choose to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just confirm that the Greenville GA school you decide on offers the program that’s right for you. However, bear in mind that just because a college has a good reputation as well as accreditation does not mean all of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited school may have a solid accredited dental hygienist program, but may have a weaker or non-accredited dental assistant program. So if you are primarily interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the ideal school for you.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a necessary component of any dental training program. This applies for the online college options also. A number of dental schools have partnerships with local dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the college you choose provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently want to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the Greenville GA area school you enroll in offers clinical rotation in an area dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Ask if the dental colleges you are evaluating have an internship program. Internships are probably the best means to receive hands-on, practical experience in a professional Greenville 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 also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Many graduating students of dental assistant programs need assistance obtaining their first job. Find out if the programs you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Greenville GA dental community in addition to broad networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Small? Find out from the Greenville GA area programs you are evaluating how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes usually provide a more intimate setting for training where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, large classes often are impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If feasible, find out if you can monitor a few classes at the school that you are leaning toward in order to witness first hand the level of interaction between students and teachers before making a commitment.
What is the Entire Expense of the Program? Dental assistant training can fluctuate in cost depending on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for example the reputations of the colleges and whether they are public or private also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when examining the cost of colleges, don’t forget to include all of the expenses related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in Greenville GA.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental school, you must confirm that the assistant program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and must go to classes near your Greenville GA home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online college, you will still have to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up procedure is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Considering Attending Dental Assistant School near Greenville GA?
Following is some interesting background information about Greenville Georgia that you may find helpful.
Greenville is a city in Meriwether County, Georgia, United States. The population was 946 at the 2000 census. The city is the county seat of Meriwether County and is located 54.9 miles (88.4 km) southwest of Atlanta. It is part of the Atlanta metropolitan area (Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Georgia Metropolitan Statistical Area).
As of the census of 2000, there were 946 people, 354 households, and 236 families residing in the city. The population density was 520.8 people per square mile (200.7/km²). There were 432 housing units at an average density of 237.8 per square mile (91.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 26.43% White, 73.15% African American, 0.11% Native American, 0.11% Pacific Islander, and 0.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.32% of the population.
There were 354 households out of which 29.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 34.5% were married couples living together, 29.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.1% were non-families. 28.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.35.
Select the Right Dental Assistant School near Greenville GA
Choosing the ideal dental assistant program is crucial if you want to take the CDA examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous alternatives available to acquire your training and it takes a fairly short period of time to become a dental assistant. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools generally receive a Certificate. Dental Assistants typically require about one year of study prior to entering 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 decide to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the ideal choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Greenville GA.
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