How to Become a Dental Assistant in Peachtree City Georgia
Selecting the right dental assistant program near Peachtree City GA is an essential initial step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than picking the dental assistant school with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the one that is closest to your home. There are other significant issues to take into account as well, including the program’s reputation and accreditation. Your initial step is to decide which of the two credentials you are most interested in obtaining training for, which may depend on the amount of money and time that you are willing to commit. The most common dental assistant program normally takes about one year to finish for a diploma or certificate. Meanwhile dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to accomplish. Obviously with the longer training comes more expense. We will explore all of these factors and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental assistant schools you are analyzing 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 Peachtree City GA
Dental assistants are an integral component of any Peachtree City GA dental office and can perform a wide range of functions. Their main job description is to give assistance to the admin staff and the dentists. In other words, to help keep the practice working successfully. Many dental assistants opt to specialize and earn certification in a specific area, such as pediatrics. Even so most assistants carry out any job that they are called upon to fulfill, for example:
- Scheduling and verifying 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
- Prepping X-ray machines and handling X-rays
- Ordering office and dental supplies
Certification and licensing 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 need to be certified and licensed. Most dental assistants who are either required or choose to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam provided by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Assistant Training Programs near Peachtree City GA
Dental assistant programs are offered at Georgia junior colleges as well as vocational or technical schools. As previously mentioned, the most frequent credential earned is the certificate, which ordinarily takes about a year to complete. There are fewer Associate Degree programs offered, and they provide a more comprehensive education, including general subjects in addition to the dental assisting classes. These programs can require anywhere from two to as long as three 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 aspect to the training also. Many programs also offer internships with Peachtree City GA dentists or dental practices.
Dental Assistant Online Training
Enrolling in an online dental assistant program may be a great alternative for getting your education. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be available by means of your personal computer in the convenience of your Peachtree City GA home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while going to college, online dental classes make education far more accessible. Many may even have lower tuition rates than their traditional competitors. And additional expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced also. The practical training can usually be completed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to receive the proper education is provided. If you have the dedication for this method of education, you may find that attending an dental hygienist online school is the right choice for you.
What to Ask Dental Assistant Schools
Once you have picked the dental specialty and kind of credential you want to earn, you can start the process of comparing Georgia schools and programs. As we discussed at the start of this article, a number of students begin by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they look for several online alternatives as well. Although these may be significant initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the Peachtree City GA area programs you are reviewing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Assistant College Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental assistant program. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a condition in virtually all states. To qualify 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 education you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in Peachtree City GA frequently prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not offered for non-accredited Georgia programs.
Is The Correct Dental Program Offered? You can choose to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just make sure that the Peachtree City GA school you decide on has the program that’s right for you. However, keep in mind that just because a college has an excellent reputation as well as 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 right college for you.
Is Sufficient Clinical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is an essential part of any dental training program. This is true for the online school options also. Many dental schools have partnerships with regional dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you enroll in provides enough 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, verify that the Peachtree City GA area college you select offers clinical rotation in a local dental practice that focuses on dental treatment for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental programs you are evaluating sponsor an internship program. Internships are probably the best means to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a real Peachtree City 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 Offered? Most graduating students of dental assistant schools need assistance obtaining their first job. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Peachtree City GA dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can refer their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classes Small? Ask the Peachtree City GA area schools you are reviewing how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more intimate atmosphere for training where students have increased access to the instructors. On the other hand, larger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can sit in on a few classes at the school that you are leaning toward in order to witness first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental assistant colleges can differ in cost depending on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other factors, for instance the reputations of the schools and if they are private or public also come into play. But along with the tuition there are other substantial costs which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when comparing the cost of schools, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to check out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Peachtree City GA.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental college, you must make sure that the assistant program provides classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while getting your education and must attend classes near your Peachtree City GA home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still be required 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 due to illness, work or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending Dental Assistant School near Peachtree City GA?
Following is some interesting background information about Peachtree City Georgia that you may find helpful.
Peachtree City, Georgia
Peachtree City is located in western Fayette County in the southern Atlanta metro area. It is bordered to the west by Coweta County and to the north by the city of Tyrone. It is crossed by Georgia State Route 74, Georgia State Route 34, and Georgia State Route 54. SR 54 leads east 10 miles (16 km) to Fayetteville, the county seat, and southwest 17 miles (27 km) to Luthersville. Newnan is 12 miles (19 km) to the west via SR 54 and SR 34. SR 74, the Joel Cowan Parkway, runs through the west side of Peachtree City, leading north 6 miles (10 km) to Tyrone and 11 miles (18 km) to Interstate 85 near Fairburn. Downtown Atlanta is 31 miles (50 km) to the north via SR 74 and I-85.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Peachtree City has a total area of 25.4 square miles (65.9 km2), of which 24.6 square miles (63.6 km2) is land and 0.93 square miles (2.4 km2), or 3.57%, is water. The city is in the watershed of Line Creek, which forms the western city boundary and county line, and is a south-flowing tributary of the Flint River.
Peachtree City has three lakes. Lake Kedron to the north is a reservoir that supplies Lake Peachtree to the south via Flat Creek. Lake Kedron is owned by the Fayette County Authority, and is managed so as to keep Lake Peachtree full whenever there is a lack of rain and still allow for recreational use of the lake during droughts. Lake Kedron is not afforded any recreational use except for fishing. Lake McIntosh, the newest lake, close to Planterra, has now reached full pool.
Find the Right Dental Assistant Program near Peachtree City GA
Choosing the right dental assistant course is essential if you intend to take the CDA examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are many options available to acquire your education and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental assistant. You can receive your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools typically earn a Certificate. Dental Assistants typically require roughly one year of study before they enter the work force. When pursuing a certificate or degree you can choose to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training or credential you choose to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the ideal selection. And as a result, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Peachtree City GA.
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