How to Become a Dental Assistant in Wauregan Connecticut
Choosing the right dental assistant school near Wauregan CT is an essential first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you need to analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than selecting the dental assistant college with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the one that is nearest to your home. There are other crucial issues to consider as well, including the program’s accreditation and reputation. Your initial step is to decide which of the two credentials you are most interested in obtaining training for, which may be contingent on the amount of money and time that you are willing to commit. The most common dental assistant program generally takes about 1 year to finish for a diploma or certificate. However dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from two to three years to accomplish. Obviously with the longer training comes more cost. We will talk about all of these considerations 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 provided.
The Function of a Dental Assistant in Wauregan CT
Dental assistants are an essential component of any Wauregan CT dental practice and can undertake a myriad of tasks. Their primary job description is to give assistance to the dentists and the administrative staff. Or simply put, to help keep the practice running efficiently. Many dental assistants opt to specialize and obtain certification in a particular area, for instance orthodontics. Even so most assistants perform any task that they are asked to complete, for example:
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Preparing patients for teeth cleanings and treatments
- Sterilizing and preparing dental instruments
- Using suction equipment to clear patients’ mouths
- Providing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Preparing X-ray machines and handling X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants vary by state, so check with the Connecticut dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants dealing with X-ray machines more than likely will need to be certified and licensed. Most 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 Wauregan CT
Dental assistant courses are offered at Connecticut community colleges along with trade or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most typical credential earned is the certificate, which usually takes about a year to complete. There are less Associate Degree programs available, and they provide a more expansive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assisting courses. These programs can take anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in almost every state. They are also offered in Connecticut community colleges and technical schools. Whether you are pursuing earning a certificate or a degree as a dental assistant, there will be a practical aspect to the training as well. Many programs also sponsor internships with Wauregan CT dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Assistant Classes
Selecting an online dental assistant program may be a great option for getting your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the balance of your classes will be provided by means of your personal computer in the comfort of your Wauregan CT home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while attending college, online dental programs make education a lot more obtainable. Some may even have lower tuition fees than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened as well. The clinical training can typically be performed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything necessary to get the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this mode of education, you may find that attending an dental hygienist online school is the ideal choice for you.
What to Cover With Dental Assistant Programs
Once you have selected the dental specialization and type of credential you want to earn, you can start the process of comparing Connecticut programs and schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many prospective students begin by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Maybe they search for some online options as well. Even though these are significant initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the Wauregan CT area programs you are looking at in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Assistant School Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental assistant program. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition 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 instruction you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Employers in Wauregan CT often prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not provided for non-accredited Connecticut schools.
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 Wauregan CT school you decide on has the program that you want. However, bear in mind that even if a college has an excellent reputation and accreditation does not mean each one of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited college may have a solid accredited dental hygienist program, but may have a weaker or non-accredited dental assistant program. So if you are just interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the best college for you.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a necessary portion of every dental training program. This applies for the online college options also. Many dental programs have partnerships with local dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only important that the college you choose provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the Wauregan CT area school you select offers clinical rotation in an area dental office that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental colleges you are evaluating have internship programs. Internships are probably the most effective way to obtain hands-on, practical experience in a professional Wauregan CT dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students build professional relationships in the local dentistry community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Most graduating students of dental assistant colleges require assistance landing their first job. Find out if the schools you are considering have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Wauregan CT dental profession as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can position their students for employment or internships.
Are Classrooms Smaller? Check with the Wauregan CT area colleges you are interested in how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes generally provide a more intimate atmosphere for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, bigger classes tend to be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can sit in on a few classes at the college that you are most interested in in order to witness first hand the degree of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Entire Expense of the Program? Dental assistant colleges can differ in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other variables, such as the reputations of the schools and whether they are public or private also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant costs 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 programs, remember to include all of the expenses associated with your education. Most schools have financial assistance departments, so make sure to ask what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in Wauregan CT.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental school, you need to confirm that the assistant program provides classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while receiving your education and need to go to classes near your Wauregan CT 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 protocol is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family issues.
Considering Attending Dental Assistant School near Wauregan CT?
Following is some interesting background information about Wauregan Connecticut that you may find helpful.
Wauregan is a village located in the northwestern corner of the town of Plainfield, Connecticut in the United States. Originally a mill village, Wauregan was established around a cotton mill powered by the Quinebaug River.
A 90-acre (360,000 m2) portion of the original village area is listed as a historic district, the Wauregan Historic District, encompassing structures that are directly related to the economic and social activities of the mill. The district was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. Extant buildings in the Wauregan historic district include the Wauregan Mill, an H-shaped building built from local fieldstone; James Atwood's home; the two boarding houses; the company store; and over one hundred workers' houses. Architectural styles represented include Greek Revival and Late Victorian architecture.
Named for a Mohegan word meaning "Pleasant Valley" Wauregan has a long history as an industrial village. In 1850, Amos D. Lockwood, who was involved with the Quinebaug Mill in Danielsonville, bought the water privileges and surrounding land at Wauregan. After the Wauregan Mills Company charter was approved by the Connecticut legislature in 1853, the first mill was constructed circa 1853-1854. Wauregan Mills was well known for its woven cotton goods, including various types of flannel. Lockwood became the mill's first agent and recruited James S. Atwood as his superintendent, who became responsible for setting up all machinery and starting production. The principal product of Wauregan was cotton sheeting.
Enroll in the Best Dental Assistant School near Wauregan CT
Selecting the right dental assistant program is essential if you intend to take the CDA exam or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are a number of alternatives available to receive your training and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental assistant. You can acquire your formal education through dental programs at junior colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these schools generally receive a Certificate. Dental Assistants usually require roughly one year of study before they enter the job market. When pursuing a certificate or degree you can choose to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training or credential you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the appropriate choice. And as a result, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Wauregan CT.
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