700 Industrial Drive, Ste K, Cary IL 60013

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Dental Assistant Certification

Where to get it, requirements, salary, and more…

The dental health industry is a giant valued at more than $53 billion dollars in the last year and is expected to double its value by the end of the decade. This niche industry involves a lot of different professions and if you are considering working as a dental assistant, getting a certification may be what you need to achieve your career goals. In this article, we will discuss the responsibilities of a dental assistant, the best places for getting your certification and additional training courses, requirements, and the average salary. We hope we can help you make an informed decision when going into this line of work.

Certified dental assistant responsibilities:

A dental assistant is an integral part of the dental office. Working alongside the dental staff, a dental assistant has a lot of responsibilities that include helping the dentist with patient care, sterilizing instruments, taking x-rays, making temporary crowns, processing dental claims and billing information, scheduling appointments, and interacting with patients—and that’s just to name a few.

But did you also know that dental assistants have another very important responsibility? A dental clinic has dental scrap metal generated as waste. The job of sending this scrap to a refinery is often assigned to a dental assistant.

The dental scrap metal produced by the office can be converted into cash that can create a passive income. In many cases, dental clinics don’t take recycling scrap into consideration which means that you, as a dental assistant, can benefit from this income to help fund dental assistant certifications and training courses.

Dental Assistant License Requirements:

In the US, a dental assistant is required to have a license to practice in a state. The dental assistant license requirements are:

  1. Pass an exam through the American Dental Association or their state’s equivalent.
  2. Complete at least 2 years of schooling and training in an accredited program.
  3. Complete at least 1,600 hours of clinical experience under supervision.

Dental Assistant Salary:

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, dental assistant salaries vary based on factors like location, experience, education level, employer type (private practice or hospital), and others. Dental assistants who work in the private practice of a dentist earn an average salary range between $32,000 and $49,000 annually.

Dental Assistant Certification Programs:

According to bestvalueschools.org, these are the top 5 dental assistant certification programs in the US:

Accreditation: Approved PACE Program Provider by the Academy of General Dentistry

Accreditation: ACCJC, Approved by the Dental Board of California 

Accreditation: Commission on Dental Accreditation of the American Dental Association

Accreditation: Commission on Dental Accreditation  

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education, CODA 

Dental Assistant Training Courses:

Once you are a dental assistant, it’s important to keep educating yourself to grow your career. Fortunately, there are a lot of options of areas to specialize in. Here are some of the most convenient training courses for dental assistants that may interest you:

A full-day course offered by the Dental Staff Institute of Charlotte, NC Community College for dental assistants who wish to expand their skills. This certification comprises didactic and clinical training about methods, equipment, and material used in coronal polishing.

Credit Hours: 8

Tuition Fee: $395


This dental assistant training certification is offered by the Illinois State Dental Society (ISDS). This course aims to familiarize the dental assistants with anatomy and physiology, sedation techniques, monitoring of vitals during sedation, basic management protocols for anesthesia.

Credit Hours: 12

Tuition fee: $900


Offered by ISDS, this course is an 8-hour dental assistant training course that demonstrates the various techniques and assessment of intraoral and extra-oral radiographs in adults and pediatric patients. 

Credit Hours: 8

Tuition fee: $525


Offered by ISDS, a training course that teaches the dental assistants about theoretical and clinical components of nitrous oxide sedation in the dental office. 

Tuition fee: $525


Maryland State Dental Association offers a dental radiation safety update course for helping dentists, hygienists, and dental assistants to update their skills.

Credit Hours: 8 hours

Tuition fee: $255

Dental scrap recycling to help found your certification:

As you can see, becoming a dental assistant can be a very rewarding profession. However, sometimes getting through the first certification courses can be a little pricey. Fortunately, as we briefly mentioned before, you can help pay for the course’s tuition by recycling your practice’s dental scrap. 

But beware! Many middlemen out there go to dental practices and buy dental scrap for cash on the spot. This might seem like a practical solution for you, but the reality is that these intermediaries keep up to 70% percent of the value of the dental scrap to themselves. Don’t be fooled by these middlemen, use a reputable dental scrap refinery to recycle.

Core Scientific is a specialized dental scrap refinery, working directly with thousands of dental practices in the US. We not only give our customers the top returns in the industry (2-5 times more than other refineries) but we are also endorsed by the American Academy of Dental Office Management and recognized as their official dental refiner.

Contact us today to start getting the highest returns for your dental scrap recycling! 

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700 Industrial Drive, Ste K

Cary IL

60013, United States

Phone: 866-660-4631

Working hours:

Monday-Friday: 9:00 – 5:00

Saturday: Closed

Sunday: Closed

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[…] being a valuable member of the dental team when it comes to dental assisting. So before choosing a dental assistant course, take your time and do your research; this will help you start your dental career on the right […]

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