How to Become a Dental Assistant in Marietta Georgia
Choosing the right dental assistant training course near Marietta GA is an essential first step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you need to analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than picking the dental assistant program with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the one that is closest to your home. There are other important factors to take into account also, including the college’s reputation and accreditation. Your first 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 invest. The most typical dental assistant program generally takes about one year to complete for a diploma or certificate. However dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from two to three years to finish. Obviously with the more extensive training comes more cost. We will discuss all of these factors and additional questions that you should be asking the dental assistant schools you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s review the roles of dental assistants and further discuss the training options offered.
The Function of Dental Assistants in Marietta GA
Dental assistants are an essential part of any Marietta GA dental office and can carry out a wide range of tasks. Their fundamental job description is to provide support to the dentists and the administrative staff. In other words, to help keep the practice working efficiently. A number of dental assistants elect to specialize and obtain certification in a specific area, for example pediatrics. However the majority of assistants perform any duty that they are asked to fulfill, such as:
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Readying patients for teeth cleanings and treatments
- Preparing and sterilizing instruments for dentists
- Using suction equipment to clear patients’ mouths
- Handing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Preparing X-ray machines and handling X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants deviate by state, so check with the Georgia dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants dealing with X-ray machines most likely will have to be certified and licensed. A large number of 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 Education Options near Marietta GA
Dental assistant courses are provided at Georgia junior colleges as well as technical or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most common credential acquired is the certificate, which usually takes about one year to complete. There are less Associate Degree programs available, and they furnish a more extensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assistant courses. These programs can take anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in virtually every state. They are also offered in Georgia trade schools and community colleges. Regardless of whether you are interested in earning a certificate or a degree as a dental assistant, there will be a clinical component to the training as well. Many programs also offer internships with Marietta GA dentists or dental practices.
Dental Assistant Online Training Programs
Choosing an online dental assistant course may be a great option for getting your education. Just remember that the classes will not be completely online, since there will be a clinical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be provided by means of your personal computer in the comfort of your Marietta GA home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental classes make education a lot more obtainable. Many may even have lower tuition fees than their traditional counterparts. And additional expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened as well. The practical training can typically be performed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to obtain the appropriate education is provided. If you have the dedication for this style of education, you might find that attending an online dental hygienist program is the ideal choice for you.
Questions to Ask Dental Assistant Colleges
When you have decided on the dental specialization and kind of credential you want to attain, you can begin the process of comparing Georgia schools and programs. As we discussed at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the schools. Possibly they search for some online options also. Although these may be important initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you should address to the Marietta 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 help you with your due diligence and final selection of the best dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Assistant Program Accredited? There are a number of good reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental assistant program. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in almost all states. To qualify to take the Certified Dental Assistant examination, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the training you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Employers in Marietta GA frequently desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited programs. And last, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not offered for non-accredited Georgia colleges.
Is The Appropriate Dental Program Available? You can decide to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just verify that the Marietta GA college you decide on offers the program that you want. However, bear 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 might have a weaker or non-accredited dental assistant program. So if you are solely interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the best school for you.
Is Enough Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an important component of any dental training program. This is true for the online college options as well. Most dental schools have relationships with local dental offices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only important that the school you enroll in offers sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the Marietta GA area program you select offers clinical rotation in a regional dental practice that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental schools you are exploring sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the best way to obtain hands-on, practical experience in a professional Marietta 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 Support Provided? Many graduating students of dental assistant schools require assistance getting their first job. Find out if the schools you are considering have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Marietta GA dental community as well as large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Smaller? Ask the Marietta GA area schools you are reviewing how big typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally offer a more personal environment for training where students have increased access to the instructors. On the other hand, bigger classes can be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the college that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.
What is the Entire Cost of the Program? Dental assistant training can vary in cost depending on the length of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, for example the reputations of the schools and if they are private or public also come into play. But besides the tuition there are other substantial expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when examining the cost of schools, remember to include all of the costs related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to find out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Marietta GA.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental school, you must verify that the assistant program offers classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while receiving your education and must attend classes near your Marietta GA home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online school, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up policy is if you should need to miss any classes because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Considering Attending Dental Assistant School near Marietta GA?
Following is some interesting background information about Marietta Georgia that you may find helpful.
As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 56,579. The 2013 estimate is 59,089, making it one of Atlanta's largest suburbs. Marietta is the fourth largest of the principal cities (by population) of the Atlanta metropolitan statistical area.
The origin of the name is uncertain. It is believed that the city was named for Mary Cobb, the wife of U.S. Senator and Superior Court judge Thomas Willis Cobb. Judge Cobb is the namesake of the county.
Homes were built by early settlers near the Cherokee town of Big Shanty (now Kennesaw) prior to 1824. The first plat was laid out in 1833. Like most towns, Marietta had a square (see Marietta Square) in the center with a courthouse. The Georgia General Assembly legally recognized the community on December 19, 1834.
Enroll in the Right Dental Assistant College near Marietta GA
Picking the right dental assistant program is essential if you intend to take the CDA examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous options available to receive your education and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental assistant. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at junior colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these programs usually obtain a Certificate. Dental Assistants usually require approximately 1 year of study before they enter the work force. When pursuing a certificate or degree you can elect to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever credential or mode of training you choose to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the best choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Marietta GA.
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