If you have some healthcare experience, perhaps becoming a dental assistant in Alaska is your next step.
However, you do not need to have any prior experience to train in this field and end up working in less than a year.
- License Requirements to Become a Dental Assistant in Alaska
- 5 Dental Assistant Schools in Alaska
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Do you need a degree to become a dental assistant in Alaska?
- What does a dental assistant usually do all day?
- What is the average length of a dental assistant training program in Alaska?
- What is the cost of dental assistant training in Alaska?
- What other positions can a dental assistant in Alaska advance to?
License Requirements to Become a Dental Assistant in Alaska
You can start outperforming the basic dental assistant duties that you might learn during the first few months of training.
If you choose to stay on the office side of dentistry, your entry into the work world might happen sooner.
The issue lies in making sure you receive the radiology training required before you take digital images or X-rays.
Different types of certification exams exist that will help you meet your educational goals.
Two primary ones include the National Entry Level Dental Assistant (NELDA) and Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) credential exams.
Dental assistants must have a high school diploma or equivalent.
You also must complete an accredited dental assistant program approved by Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA), which is operated by the American Dental Association.
Some available certifications include the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) or the Registered Dental Assistant (RDA).
Alaska Natives also have their own certification called the Dental Health Aide Therapist (DHAT).
5 Dental Assistant Schools in Alaska
1. Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium
This rather unique program exists not quite like the dental assisting program in most states.
It is training for a Dental Health Aide Therapist (DHAT). As a DHAT, you would learn preventative measures for helping people take care of their teeth.
Then, you would transfer this information onto the patients you help serve under a dentist’s supervision.
It takes two years to train to become DHAT.
Part of this includes three months of practical training under a dentist.
In addition to preventative services, you would participate along with a dentist in providing basic restorations and extractions.
The DHAT program has been recognized by Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Arizona and New Mexico.
This initiative started to improve dental health among the Alaskan native people.
2. University of Alaska Anchorage
This anchorage training enables you to become a dental assistant in less than a year.
You can enroll either part-time or full-time.
The certificate program well prepare you to become a CDA.
As of 2021, the instructors have about 35 years of experience.
Your coursework will show you proper infection control methods, warnings about radiographic exposure and Treatment room set up.
You will also become confident in taking impressions and creating temporary restorations for patient.
This Anchorage dental assisting certificate program and corresponding associate training track could prepare you for work in an orthodontist’s office, pediatric dentist facility, or oral surgery office.
Otherwise, you could just find employment in a general dental clinic.
3. South Central Foundation
The nonprofit South Central foundation Anchorage, AK believes in you so much that it has created a four-month Dental Assistant Training Program.
You get paid while you at the Alaska native health campus in Anchorage.
Entry into the South Central foundation program does require a bit of effort.
Fill out the application, set up an interview, and make sure you fulfill the criteria for becoming accepted.
4. University of Alaska Fairbanks
There is another Alaska university that offers a dental assistant a certificate program.
You will receive a lot of attention when enrolled because class size is limited to 12 people.
This program that lasts three semesters will prepare you to take the NELDA or DNB exam.
Upon course completion and certification award you could work in either a clinic or pursue an office assistant position.
Places you can find jobs after completing this training include pediatric orthodontic or oral surgery offices.
You also might secure a position in an educational department or for a public health facility.
You receive both classroom and hands-on practice.
5. Indian Health Service (Continuing Education)
Indian Health Service continuing education service includes some dental assisting courses.
Some classes cover periodontal, restorative or digital imaging and health examination topics. You also could receive advanced radiology training.
Use these to refresh the certifications you have earned or start anew.
Dental Assistant Schools in Alaska – Summary Table
Top 5 Schools in Alaska
|Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium||4000 Ambassador Drive Anchorage, AK 99508|
|University of Alaska Anchorage||3211 Providence Dr, Anchorage, AK 99508|
|South Central foundation||4501 Diplomacy Dr, Anchorage, AK 99508|
|University of Alaska Fairbanks||505 S Chandalar, Fairbanks, AK 99775|
|Indian Health Service (Continuing Education)||Inuit Building, 4141 Ambassador Dr, Anchorage, AK 99508|
A report made in April 2022 shows that a Dental Assistant in Alaska can make an average yearly income of $45,747 with a range of $40,574 to $50,760.
Your income can increase to more than $55,324 if you continue your education and keep adding more credentials to your training.
Start looking for jobs in places such as Anchorage, Mountain Village, Newtok or Hooper Bay.Annual Salary Range:
Average Salary of Dental Assistants in Alaska
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you need a degree to become a dental assistant in Alaska?
If you are just starting out at the entry level, you do not need a degree or a certificate.
To become a licensed dental assistant in Alaska, you must have a high school diploma or equivalent, complete an accredited dental assistant program, and pass the state board exam.
What does a dental assistant usually do all day?
The duties of a dental assistant include preparing patients for dental treatment, during which you may have to spend time making them comfortable.
After all, going to the dentist is not the easiest thing in the world to do.
You also might assist with office duties, and you will sterilize instruments and check vital signs, or perform any requests within your scope of allowed tasks.
What is the average length of a dental assistant training program in Alaska?
Some coursework might only take you a few months.
That does not include your on-the-job training.
Most programs last about a year, and you could earn your associate degree in about two years.
What is the cost of dental assistant training in Alaska?
Cost depends on where you receive your training.
Usually, it may cost about $3,000-$10,000 for the certificate or associate degree program.
However, you do not have to wait very long to start working.
You could just take the courses required before you take your certification exam.
If you start with a certificate, you can earn the money you need to live while preparing for other certifications.
What other positions can a dental assistant in Alaska advance to?
Some dental assistants in Alaska may advance to become dental hygienists, dental therapists, or dental laboratory technicians.
If you have the determination, you can use your dental clinic work experience to become a dentist someday.
Dentists usually have to complete about six to eight years of coursework and real-life practice.