If you love helping others put their best smile forward, a dental career could be the right path for you.
Dental assistants and hygienists have job outlooks of 7% and 6%, respectively, making dentistry one of the fastest-growing fields.
A dental career could manifest in various jobs, depending on your education and skill, but there are more options available than a dentist or dental surgeon.
A dental assistant keeps patients comfortable, prepares the work area, sterilizes equipment, aids the dentist, processes X-rays, records dental treatments, schedules appointments, and helps with billing.
Depending on your state, you may need to complete a one to a two-year educational program and pass an exam to become a dental assistant.
Other states let you learn through on-the-job training.
You will learn about dental terminology, tools, tasks, communication, and working in an office.
Dental assistants report high job satisfaction with mid-level pay.
Furthermore, this position has a high job outlook, meaning you will likely find employment with training.
A dental hygienist works with the dentist to clean patients’ teeth, check for cavities, apply fluoride and sealants, take X-rays, document treatment plans, and educate patients about oral hygiene.
You will need at least an associate’s degree in dental hygiene.
Anything beyond an associate’s degree will qualify you for teaching and research positions.
You will need licensing from the National Board of Hygiene, and some states may require other exams and training.
To broaden your experience before joining a permanent practice, try temping.
The Tempmee – On-Demand Hygienist Placement demonstrates the benefits of working in a temporary position to expand your experience and fill in employment gaps.
Dental hygienists report high job satisfaction with an upper-level salary and a decently-sized job outlook.
With h2 interpersonal skills and the proper education, you can easily become a dental hygienist.
Dental technicians pour denture models, fix dental prosthetics, manufacture veneers, make denture molds, maintain laboratory equipment, and keep records.
You may work with small hand tools or computer programs to complete your tasks.
This position requires minimal education, as you will receive on-the-job training.
Some community colleges and vocational schools have programs for further certification, which you may attain to progress your career.
Passing an exam from the National Association of Dental Laboratories can improve your career prospects.
If you are dexterous, pay attention to detail, and learn quickly, you can become a dental technician.
It offers mid-level pay with a 9% job outlook.
You do not need to attend medical school to work in dentistry.
Whether you want to become a dental assistant, hygienist, or technician, you can easily train and start developing your dental career.