A career as a dental assistant is rewarding, and it’s also secure. The dental industry is gradually growing and is expected to reach $10.7 billion in 2026, up from $9.6 billion in 2022.
Here are some of the top reasons why being a dental assistant could be the perfect career for you.
It’s important to keep job security in mind when choosing a career. People will always need dental work, so the demand for dentists and dental assistants isn’t going anywhere. Another factor that contributes to job security for dental assistants is that dentists need somebody they can rely on. No dental office wants to face dental malpractice suits, so dental assistants that can be counted on are unlikely to face difficulties finding work.
While technology and automation are rendering many jobs obsolete, they’re making work easier for dentists and their assistants. For example, high-tech X-ray machines make it easier for dentists to diagnose problems with digital X-rays, helping them deliver treatment that gets to the root of the problem—no pun intended.
Technological developments in the dental industry, like advanced tooth alignment tools and teeth whitening kits, have given practitioners more tools to help their patients and ways to market their services.
Being able to offer more services means more customers and a steady, secure income for the practices that employ dental assistants.
Having a consistent schedule is essential for people who need to plan their weeks ahead of time. For example, if you have children or other regular responsibilities outside of work, knowing your work schedule in advance is important.
As a dental assistant, you’ll know what time you must leave for work each day and what time you’ll be home, and you’ll usually work for a set number of days each week.
The median annual salary for a dental assistant in 2022 is a respectable $39,000. The 90th percentile of dental assistants earn around $53,000 on average.
This salary is made more attractive by the relatively affordable and short training required to become a dental assistant. A diploma program will typically cost between $3,000 and $13,000, while an associates degree will cost between $6,000 and $15,000.
Also, in many cases, applicants do not necessarily need to meet high academic standards to qualify for training. Required qualifications include one of the following:
- High school diploma
- Graduation from a dental assistant or dental hygiene program
- Graduation from a CODA-accredited DDS or DMD program, or having former DANB CDA status
The qualifications required for these courses vary, although if you have a GED or are working toward a GED, that’s sufficient in many cases.
Other perks of being a dental assistant include sick pay, insurance, and a wonderful smile with white teeth, thanks to free dental care.
As a dental assistant, you’ll get to work in a dynamic environment and help people improve their lives. Caring for those with dental issues can provide you with a sense of purpose. Dental assistants keep patients calm during what is a stressful experience for many.
For those who enjoy helping people, this can be the most satisfying part of the job.
Great future prospects
The dental industry is growing, and becoming a dental assistant will get your foot in the door. While working in that role, you’ll learn more about the industry and gain experience that will prepare you to climb the career ladder.
Some dental assistants become dental assisting instructors or office managers. If you expand your qualifications, you can become a dental hygienist. Whatever your preference, there are plenty of opportunities to move up in the industry.
Find work anywhere
People need dentists everywhere, so as a dental assistant you won’t be restricted to your current location. If your partner finds a job in another state or you want to move to a better area, you won’t be tied down. With dental offices all over the country, it will be easy to find work.
If you’re interested in becoming a dental assistant, contact a training center as soon as you can. Training prices are relatively low, and with quick training, you could be in a paid role before you know it.
As a dental assistant, you can start gaining experience in the industry that will help you progress in your career. You will have a secure job that allows you to work anywhere you want, and earn a respectable salary for helping people.
About the author
Jamie Finch is a freelance writer with nearly two decades of experience. He left Britain in the year 2000 and headed East. He is currently living in Bangkok and writes on a wide range of topics, with a particular focus on SEO and marketing.
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