Idaho Dental Assistant Schools and Salary Guide

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Idaho has some are the most relaxed laws concerning dental assistant training.

This gives you more options when looking for the right school.

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Idaho Licensing Requirements To Become a Dental Assistant

The state of Idaho does not tell you that you need to complete a dental assisting program in the state to become a dental assistant.

That means you could take your training from anywhere that you have and use it in a position here.

You may want to update your training though if you have worked as a dental assistant in the past.

In that case, it might just require you to take a couple of continuing education courses.

The state has also not established any requirements concerning the use of radiology equipment.

Dental assistants of all levels can operate X-ray machines without certification.

The primary reason to get certified is to prove that you are who you say you are.

Dentists’ offices in Idaho want to know if they can rely on you to provide safe, clean, and thoughtful services when you work for them.

Even though it is not required, the standard recommendation across the country is to seek training from a school approved by the Commission on dental accreditation (CODA).

If you cannot find a school like that near you, you can try online.

If you cannot find a CODA-approved school, it is a good idea to at least find training from an institution that would prepare you for taking the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) exam.

The Only Major Requirement

One of the few major requirements is that the dental assistant needs to train according to the rules set by the Idaho board of dentistry before administering nitrous oxide or oxygen to patients.

DAs must obtain a permit after taking 24 hours of classroom instruction on administering of sedative drugs, with the only exception being a minor relaxation (probably a case when the patient is still awake).

During the instructions on sedatives, the DA student will need to present three live patient cases.

5 Dental Assistant Schools in Idaho

1. College of Eastern Idaho (CEI)

College of Eastern Idaho Logo

CEI is one that does follow the Idaho State Board of Dentistry standards.

A student who has received similar education in another state would fit right in.

It is recommended to take this type of training, which teaches you a variety of dental assisting back-end and front-end tasks.

For instance, you need to know about CPR first aid, charting and radiology, sealants, and temporary crowns.

Moreover, you are going to need to know how to schedule appointments (if that is your job description) and you will have to file patient records and deal with insurance issues.

This school will prepare you for all that and more.

The certificate program takes 12 months in total.

2. College of Western Idaho (CWI)

College of Western Idaho Logo

CWI offers both a one-year certificate and a two-year associate degree dental assisting program.

Even though the school is not listed on the DANB website as a CODA-approved institution, CWI does have an affiliation with this American Dental Association body.

This school has its own titles for the completion credentials they offer.

One is the Intermediate Technical Certificate (ITC) and the Associate of Applied Science (AAS).

You could say this is the equivalent of what other states call entry-level and registered dental assistant level training.

3. The Dale Foundation

The DALE Foundation Logo

This continuing education body helps each state out whenever it can.

For instance, it has held free Infection Control certification required by many states.

It also provides required continuing education (CE) hours for those that need to fulfill them.

You could train on a variety of specific topics related to pediatrics or dental anxiety, among others.

You might find what you’re looking for about nitrous oxide and oxygen too.

4. College of Southern Idaho (CSI)

College of Southern Idaho Logo

Do you see a pattern here?

So far, we have got a list of one school in three directions.

That should provide you with some excellent options if these places are not too far away from you.

Keep in mind that these three Idaho colleges, including the College of Southern Idaho, also have online courses.

It has a similar Intermediate Technical Certificate as CWI that runs for three or four semesters, depending on if you have the course prerequisites.

This school also has associate’s or bachelor’s degrees in a variety of health concentrations.

5. Assist to Succeed

Assist to Succeed Logo

This Idaho Falls training center operates a bit differently than the rest of the schools on this list.

It is a 10-week course that concentrates on teaching you the immediate skills for securing a dental assistant position as soon as possible.

This particular training seems to focus on teeth whitening but does provide you a chance to experience working in a dentist’s office setting.

You may need to acquire additional training if you later want to seek out new career opportunities, however.

Dental Assistant Schools in Idaho – Summary Table

Top 5 Schools in Idaho

School NameAddress
College of Eastern Idaho1600 S 25th E, Idaho Falls, ID 83404
College of Western Idaho 5500 E Opportunity Dr, Nampa, ID 83687
The Dale Foundation
College of Southern Idaho315 Falls Ave, Twin Falls, ID 83301
Assist to Succeed885 Pancheri Dr, Idaho Falls, ID 83402

Salary

An April 2022 salary report says that a dental assistant and Idaho makes an average of $38,516 with earnings ranging from $34,161 to $42,737.

With advanced certification and continuing education, you could make $46,580 or more.

Boise, Idaho Falls, Coeur D’Alene, and Kuna are some places you can look for work in the state.

Annual Salary Range:
$34K
$38K
$42K

Average Salary of Dental Assistants in Idaho

City NameSalary
Boise$38,004
Nampa$37,596
Pocatello$35,463
Idaho Falls$37,098
Meridian$37,963
Coeur d'Alene$39,014
Twin Falls$35,341
Lewiston$40,298
Caldwell$37,555
Moscow$39,014
* Salary information last updated 2022

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most important skills for a dental assistant?

They must have the ability to move, and they sometimes have to handle more than one patient.

A DA also must be able to take direction from the one in charge, usually a dentist.

In addition, they need to know how to provide empathy to patients who are scared to see the dentist.

Organizational skills are a plus, and they must not contaminate the place with germs.

What can a dental assistant not do?

There is no restriction in Idaho as to what a dentist can tell an assistant what to do.

Of course, common sense says that the dentist would want to know let the dental assistant is competent.

However, that dental assistant does not have much to worry about possibly violating laws if they perform duties that days are not supposed to perform in other states.

This, obviously, is within reason.

No one would probably expect a dental assistant to be giving a diagnosis, for example, unless maybe has worked in the field for as long as a dentist has.

Can an Idaho dental assistant diagnose a patient?

No, that is one of the things that a dental assistant cannot do.

There are also some other restrictions, such as not being allowed to perform major invasive procedures, and there is a list of certain machinery they cannot use according to the DANB.

However, DAs are given a lot more privilege than in most other states.

What does a dental assistant do all day?

It depends on if their primary task is working at the front desk or directly with patients.

They might spend most of their day answering phones and scheduling appointments when needed.

Otherwise, they will sterilize all tools and equipment used for dental work and set it up for the next time the dentist needs it.

They help out in other ways too, such as making teeth impressions, depending on their experience.

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