How to Enroll In a Dental Assistant School near Glendale Arizona
Selecting the ideal dental assistant school near Glendale AZ is an important first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must assess and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than choosing the college with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your residence. There are other crucial issues to take into account also, such as the school’s reputation and accreditation. Your first step is to decide which of the 2 specializations you are most interested in receiving training for, which may be contingent on the amount of time and money that you are willing to commit. The most typical dental assistant program normally takes about 1 year to finish for a diploma or certificate. Meanwhile dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to finish. Obviously with the lengthier training of a dental hygienist comes more cost. We will talk about all of these issues and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental assistant schools you are analyzing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the roles of both dental assistants and hygienists and the training options provided.
The Role of a Dental Assistant
Dental assistants are an important component of any Glendale AZ dental office and can carry out a multitude of tasks. Their principal job description is to provide assistance to the admin staff and the dentists. Or simply put, to help keep the practice working successfully. Many dental assistants choose to specialize and earn certification in a specific area, for instance orthodontics. However the majority of assistants perform any task that they are asked to fulfill, including:
- Setting and verifying appointments
- Preparing patients for teeth cleanings and treatments
- Preparing and sterilizing dental instruments
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Giving 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 vary by state, so consult with the Arizona dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants working with X-ray machines more than likely will have to be licensed and certified. A large number of dental assistants who are either required or opt to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) examination offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the duties of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the main difference is probably that the dental hygienist works more independently. As previously discussed, the dental assistant works with and assists the practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the Glendale AZ practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are typically the initial person a patient encounters when called from the waiting area. They examine every patient’s gums and teeth and report their findings to the dentists. They also may perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties may include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Educating patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
To qualify for licensing in almost all states, dental hygienists must have graduated 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 licensure examinations. When they have fulfilled these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Assistant & Hygienist Training Options
Dental assistant courses are offered at Arizona junior colleges as well as trade or vocational schools. The most common credential attained is the certificate, which usually takes about 1 year to finish. There are less Associate Degree programs offered, and they provide a more extensive education, including general subjects in addition to the dental assistant classes. Due to the additional responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Glendale AZ dental offices are usually required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. These programs can take anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to complete and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly every state. They are also offered in Arizona community colleges and technical schools. Whether you are interested in training as a dental assistant or hygienist, there will be a practical aspect to the training also. Some programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Assistant Online Classes
Enrolling in an online dental assistant school might be a great option for obtaining your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be provided via your desktop computer in the convenience of your Glendale AZ home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while attending college, online dental classes make education much more accessible. Some may even charge lower tuition costs than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened as well. The clinical training can usually be performed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything necessary to receive the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this style of education, you may find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online college is the best option for you.
Points to Ask Dental Assistant Programs
Once you have picked the dental specialization and kind of credential you wish to obtain, you can start the procedure of comparing Arizona schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of students begin by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they search for several online options as well. Even though these are significant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the Glendale AZ area colleges you are looking at in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have furnished a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Assistant School Accredited? There are a number of good reasons why you should only select an accredited dental assistant program. 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 examination, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the instruction you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in Glendale AZ typically prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And last, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, often they are not available for non-accredited Arizona programs.
Is The Appropriate Dental Program Available? You can decide to train to become a dental hygienist or a dental assistant, just confirm that the Arizona college you select offers the program that’s right for you. For the assistant program, the choices are to enroll in a certificate program or earn an Associate Degree. If you want to earn a living as a hygienist, the majority of Glendale AZ dental offices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. Higher degrees, although not common, are offered. However, bear in mind that just because a college has an excellent reputation and accreditation does not mean each one of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited school may have a solid accredited dental hygienist program, but may have a weaker or non-accredited assistant program. So if you are primarily interested in a dental assistant degree, naturally it would not be the best college for you.
Is Adequate Clinical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is an important portion of any dental training program. This is true for the online school options also. A number of dental programs have partnerships with regional dental practices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It’s not only important that the program you choose provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently want to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, check that the Glendale AZ area college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a regional dental practice that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental colleges you are evaluating have an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the best method to get hands-on, clinical experience in a real Glendale AZ dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students build working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Most graduating students of dental assistant colleges require assistance obtaining their first job. Find out if the programs you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Glendale AZ dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can position their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classrooms Small? Check with the Glendale AZ area programs you are evaluating how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes tend to provide a more intimate atmosphere for learning where students have greater access to the instructors. Conversely, large classes often are impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If feasible, ask if you can attend a couple of classes at the college that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between teachers and students before enrolling.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental assistant training can differ in cost based on the length of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the colleges and if they are private or public also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when examining the cost of programs, don’t forget to include all of the costs associated with your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to ask what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Glendale AZ.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental school, you need to make sure that the assistant program provides classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while receiving your education and need to go to classes near your Glendale AZ home at nights or on weekends. And even if you enroll in 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 work, illness or family responsibilities.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Dental Assistant?When prepping to interview for a Dental Assistant position, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you could be asked. Among the questions that interviewers often ask Dental Assistant applicants is "What drove you to decide on Assisting as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not just the personal reasons you may have for becoming a Dental Assistant, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating primarily to Assisting, in addition to a significant number of standard interview questions, so you must ready a number of approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Given that there are several variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the abilities you have that make you an exceptional Dental Assistant and the perfiect choice for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but jot down some ideas and topics that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
Find the Best Dental Assistant School near Glendale AZ
Selecting the right dental assistant program is crucial if you wish to take the CDA examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are a number of alternatives offered to acquire your training and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental assistant. You can acquire your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these schools typically obtain a Certificate. Dental Assistants typically require about one year of study prior to entering the work force. When obtaining a certificate or degree you can choose to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever credential or mode of training you elect to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the ideal selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Glendale AZ.
Tell Me About Glendale Arizona
Glendale /ˈɡlɛndeɪl/ is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, located about nine miles (14 km) northwest from Downtown Phoenix. According to the 2010 census, the population of the city is 226,721.
In the late 1800s what is now known as Glendale, Arizona, was all desert. William John Murphy, a native of New Hartford, New York, who resided in the town of Flagstaff in what was then known as the territory of Arizona, was in charge of building a 40-mile-long (64 km) Arizona Canal from Granite Reef to New River for the Arizona Canal Company. In 1885, he completed the canal, which would bring water to the desert land. Murphy was deep in debt, since he had agreed to be paid in Arizona Canal Company stock and bonds and land instead of cash.
In 1887, Murphy formed the Arizona Improvement Company. His objective was to sell the land and water rights south of the canal. Murphy had to raise capital from out of state sources in order to meet payroll and construction expenses. Murphy decided to refer to this land as "Glendale". In order to develop and interest potential investors and settlers in this new town, Murphy decided to provide a better way of access from Phoenix to Glendale and ending in the town of Peoria by building an 18-mile-long (29 km) diagonal road which he named Grand Avenue.
In 1891, Burgess Hadsell worked with Murphy to bring 70 Brethren and River Brethren families to Glendale to form a temperance colony. Soon settlers, attracted by the town's ban on alcoholic beverages, continued to arrive. In 1895, Murphy platted the original town site and amended the plat to include a town park and some business lots. It was bounded by Lamar Road on the south, 55th Avenue on the east, Myrtle Avenue on the north, and 59th Avenue on the west. The construction of a railroad from Prescott to Phoenix was made possible with an exchange of the right-of-way made by Murphy along Grand Avenue. The railroad allowed Glendale settlers to transport goods to the north and easily receive building materials.
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