How to Become a Dental Assistant in New River Arizona
Choosing the ideal dental assistant program near New River AZ is an essential initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must analyze and compare your school options. There is much more to doing your due diligence than picking the dental assistant program with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the one that is closest to your residence. There are other significant factors to take into account also, including the college’s accreditation and reputation. Your first step is to decide which of the 2 credentials you are most interested in getting training for, which may depend on the amount of time and money that you are willing to invest. The most typical dental assistant program usually takes about one year to finish for a certificate or diploma. However dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from two to three years to complete. Obviously with the more extensive training comes more cost. We will cover 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 look at the duties of dental assistants and further discuss the training options offered.
The Function of Dental Assistants in New River AZ
Dental assistants are an integral component of any New River AZ dental practice and can perform a myriad of tasks. Their principal job description is to furnish assistance to the dentists and the administrative staff. Or simply put, to help keep the practice working successfully. A number of dental assistants elect to specialize and receive certification in a particular area, such as pediatrics. However the majority of assistants carry out any duty that they are asked to fulfill, including:
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Preparing patients for teeth cleanings and treatments
- Sterilizing and preparing dental instruments
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Providing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Prepping X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants differ by state, so consult with the Arizona dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants handling X-ray machines more than likely will have to be licensed and certified. Most 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 Programs near New River AZ
Dental assistant courses are available at Arizona junior colleges along with technical or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most frequent credential acquired is the certificate, which ordinarily takes about 1 year to complete. There are fewer Associate Degree programs offered, and they furnish a more extensive education, including general subjects in addition to the dental assistant classes. These programs can require anywhere from two to as long as three years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly every state. They are also offered in Arizona vocational 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 practical component to the training also. A number of programs also offer internships with New River AZ dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Assistant Training
Choosing an online dental assistant program might 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 component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be provided by means of your desktop computer in the convenience of your New River AZ home or anywhere else on your tablet or laptop. For those working while attending school, online dental classes make education far more obtainable. Many may even offer lower tuition fees than their traditional competitors. And supplementary expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened as well. The clinical training can usually be performed at an area dental office 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 mode of education, you may find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist program is the best choice for you.
Issues to Cover With Dental Assistant Programs
After you have selected the dental specialization and type of credential you wish to obtain, you can start the procedure of comparing Arizona schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, many students start by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they look for several online alternatives as well. Even though these are important initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the New River AZ area programs you are comparing in order to arrive at an informed decision. Toward that end, we have included a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the right dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Assistant College Accredited? There are many good reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental assistant program. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a condition in almost all states. In order to take the Certified Dental Assistant examination, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the instruction you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in New River AZ typically desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not offered for non-accredited Arizona colleges.
Is The Appropriate Dental Program Available? You can choose to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just make certain that the New River AZ college you decide on offers the program that you want. However, bear in mind that even if a college 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 only interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the best college for you.
Is Adequate Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an important part of any dental training program. This holds true for the online school options as well. Most dental colleges have partnerships with area dental offices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the program you enroll in offers 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 New River AZ area college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local dental practice that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental colleges you are considering sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the best way to obtain hands-on, practical experience in a professional New River AZ dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Most students that have graduated from dental assistant colleges need help landing their first job. Ask if the schools you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the New River AZ dental profession in addition to large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for employment or internships.
Are Classes Small? Check with the New River AZ area colleges you are looking at how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes tend to provide a more intimate setting for learning where students have increased access to the instructors. On the other hand, larger classes often are impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can attend a couple of classes at the college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the amount of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental assistant training can differ in cost dependent on the length of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the schools and if they are private or public also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other substantial 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 comparing the cost of colleges, remember to add all of the expenses related to your education. The majority of colleges have financial assistance offices, so make sure to check out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in New River AZ.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental school, you must verify that the assistant program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you will be working while getting your education and have to attend classes near your New River AZ home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online program, you will still need to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes because of work, illness or family issues.
Considering Attending Dental Assistant School near New River AZ?
Following is some interesting background information about New River Arizona that you may find helpful.
New River, Arizona
New River is named after the seasonal wash of the same name, part of the Agua Fria River system which drains into the Salt River. It was founded by Lord Darrell Duppa in 1868 as a stagecoach stop. For many years it was the terminus of the old Black Canyon Highway (now Interstate 17). The pavement ended in New River and continued as a dirt road to the city of Prescott.
New River is located at 33°52′9″N 112°5′9″W / 33.86917°N 112.08583°W / 33.86917; -112.08583 (33.869149, −112.085759). It is bordered by the Tonto National Forest to the north, Cave Creek to the east, Phoenix to the south, and Anthem to the west. The CDP includes the area known as Desert Hills.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 70.8 square miles (183 km2), of which, 70.8 square miles (183 km2) of it is land and 0.01% is water. It includes both Daisy Mountain and Gavilan Peak.
Enroll in the Best Dental Assistant College near New River AZ
Choosing the ideal dental assistant course is imperative if you wish to take the CDA exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are several options available to obtain your training and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental assistant. You can acquire your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools usually earn a Certificate. Dental Assistants typically 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 on-campus or online. Whichever mode of education or credential you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the best selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in New River AZ.
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