How to Find the Right Dental Assistant School near West Jordan Utah
Choosing the right dental assistant college near West Jordan UT is an essential initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you need to evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than choosing the school with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your residence. There are other important factors to consider as well, including the school’s reputation and accreditation. Your initial step is to decide which of the two specializations you are most interested in getting training for, which may depend on the amount of money and time that you have to commit. The most typical dental assistant program generally takes about 12 months to finish for a diploma or certificate. On the other hand dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from two to three years to finish. Naturally with the prolonged training of a dental hygienist comes more cost. We will talk about all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental assistant schools you are analyzing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the duties of both dental assistants and hygienists and the training options available.
The Job of a Dental Assistant
Dental assistants are an integral component of any West Jordan UT dental practice and can undertake a multitude of duties. Their primary job description is to give support to the admin staff and the dentists. In other words, to help keep the practice running efficiently. Some dental assistants choose to specialize and receive certification in a specific area, for instance periodontics. However most assistants carry out any task that they are called upon to complete, for example:
- Scheduling and confirming appointments
- Prepping patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Sterilizing and preparing instruments for dentists
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Supplying instruments to dentists during procedures
- Prepping X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants differ by state, so check with the Utah dental board for your state’s mandates. Assistants working with X-ray machines more than likely will need to be licensed and certified. Many dental assistants who are either required or decide to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) examination offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
The Duties of Dental Hygienists
When contrasting the role of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the main difference is probably that the dental hygienist works more independently. As earlier mentioned, the dental assistant works with and in support of the practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the West Jordan UT practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are typically the initial person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and report their results to the dentists. They also may perform basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Educating patients about oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in almost all states, dental hygienists must graduate from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They must also pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam in addition to passing any state licensing exams. When they have fulfilled these requirements they are considered fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Assistant and Hygienist Education Options
Dental assistant courses are available at Utah junior colleges along with trade or vocational schools. The most frequent credential acquired is the certificate, which usually takes about a year to complete. There are less Associate Degree programs available, and they furnish a more comprehensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assisting classes. Due to the increased responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in West Jordan UT dental offices are normally required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. These programs can take anywhere from two to as long as three years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in virtually every state. They are also offered in Utah community colleges and technical schools. Regardless of whether you are interested in training as a dental hygienist or assistant, there will be a practical aspect to the training as well. Some programs also sponsor internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Dental Assistant Online Training Programs
Enrolling in an online dental assistant school may be a good option for getting your education. Just remember that the program will not be completely online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be provided by means of your desktop computer in the convenience of your West Jordan UT home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while attending school, online dental programs make education much more accessible. Some may even have lower tuition fees than their on-campus competitors. And additional expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced also. The clinical training can typically be performed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to receive the proper education is furnished. If you have the dedication for this mode of learning, you might find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online program is the best option for you.
Questions to Cover With Dental Assistant Colleges
When you have picked the dental specialization and type of credential you want to attain, you can start the procedure of comparing Utah programs and schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many potential students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the schools. Perhaps they search for some online alternatives as well. Even though these may be significant initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you need to ask of the West Jordan UT area colleges you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Assistant Program Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental assistant school. If you are intending to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually all states. To qualify to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the instruction you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in West Jordan UT often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, often they are not provided for non-accredited Utah programs.
Is The Appropriate Dental Program Offered? You can opt to train to become a dental assistant or a dental hygienist, just make sure that the Utah school you select has the program that you want. For the assistant program, the options are to earn either a certificate or an Associate Degree. In order to have a career as a hygienist, many West Jordan UT dental offices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. More advanced degrees, although not prevalent, are offered. However, keep in mind that just because a college has an exceptional reputation and accreditation does not mean all of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited college may have a strong accredited dental hygienist program, but could have a weaker or non-accredited assistant program. So if you are solely interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the ideal college for you.
Is Adequate Clinical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an essential component of any dental training program. This is true for the online school options also. Many dental colleges have partnerships with area dental offices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the college you select provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the West Jordan UT area program you choose offers clinical rotation in a local dental office that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental schools you are considering sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal method to get hands-on, practical experience in a professional West Jordan UT dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental assistant schools require help obtaining their first job. Find out if the programs you are researching have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the West Jordan UT dental profession as well as large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Check with the West Jordan UT area programs you are looking at how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more intimate setting for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, bigger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If feasible, ask if you can monitor a couple of classes at the college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the amount of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental assistant programs can vary in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, for example the reputations of the colleges and whether they are public or private also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other substantial expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when examining the cost of schools, don’t forget to include all of the expenses associated with your education. The majority of schools have financial aid departments, so make sure to ask what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in West Jordan UT.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental college, you need to make sure that the assistant program offers classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while getting your education and must attend classes near your West Jordan UT home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online college, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Dental Assistant?When getting ready to interview for a Dental Assisting position, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you could be asked. One of the things that hiring managers often ask Dental Assistant candidates is "What compelled you to select Assisting as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not merely the personal reasons you may have for being a Dental Assistant, but additionally what qualities and talents you possess that make you good at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating primarily to Assisting, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to organize a number of strategies about how you would like to address them. Since there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the talents you possess that make you an outstanding Dental Assistant and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but jot down some ideas and topics that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
Select the Ideal Dental Assistant College near West Jordan UT
Selecting the ideal dental assistant course is important if you wish to take the CDA exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous options offered to obtain your training and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental assistant. You can obtain your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools normally receive a Certificate. Dental Assistants generally require about 1 year of study prior to entering the work force. When pursuing a certificate or degree you can elect to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of education or credential you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be in a better position to make the ideal choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in West Jordan UT.
Tell Me About West Jordan Utah
West Jordan, Utah
West Jordan is a city in Salt Lake County, Utah, United States. West Jordan is a rapidly growing suburb of Salt Lake City and has a mixed economy. According to the 2010 Census, the city had a population of 103,712, placing it as the fourth most populous in the state. The city occupies the southwest end of the Salt Lake Valley at an elevation of 4,330 feet (1,320 m). Named after the nearby Jordan River, the limits of the city begin on the river's western bank and end in the eastern foothills of the Oquirrh Mountains, where Kennecott Copper Mine, the world's largest man-made excavation is located.
Settled in the mid-19th century, the city has developed into its own regional center. As of 2012, the city has four major retail centers; with Jordan Landing being one of the largest mixed-use planned developments in the Intermountain West. Companies headquartered in West Jordan include Mountain America Credit Union, Lynco Sales & Service, SME Steel, and Cyprus Credit Union. The city has one major hospital, Jordan Valley Medical Center, and a campus of Salt Lake Community College, which is designed to become the main campus by 2020.
City landmarks include Gardner Village, established in 1850, and South Valley Regional Airport, formerly known as "Salt Lake Airport #2." The airport serves general aviation operations as well as a base for the Utah Army National Guard for Apache and Black Hawk helicopters.
West Jordan received its name from Mormon settlers who entered the Salt Lake Valley in 1847 under the leadership of their prophet, Brigham Young. These first European-Americans thought of the area to be their Zion, or Holy Land, and thus named the river flowing west of their first settlement, Salt Lake City, the Western Jordan, a reference to the River Jordan in Israel. The name was later simplified to "Jordan River". Like its Middle Eastern namesake, the Jordan River flows from a fresh water lake (Utah Lake) to an inland salt sea (Great Salt Lake). West Jordan was founded around 1849 on the western banks of the Jordan River.
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