How to Select a Dental Assistant College near Elmendorf Afb Alaska
Picking the right dental assistant school near Elmendorf Afb AK is an essential first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you must examine and compare your school options. There is much more to doing your due diligence than selecting the training with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the program that is nearest to your residence. There are other significant issues to consider also, such as the college’s accreditation and reputation. 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 generally takes about 12 months to finish for a certificate or diploma. However dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to complete. Naturally with the prolonged training of a dental hygienist comes more cost. We will talk about all of these factors and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental assistant schools you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s look at the roles of both dental assistants and hygienists and the training options available.
The Role of Dental Assistants
Dental assistants are an indispensable part of any Elmendorf Afb AK dental office and can undertake a multitude of tasks. Their fundamental job description is to give support to the admin staff and the dentists. Or simply put, to help keep the practice operating successfully. Some dental assistants elect to specialize and obtain certification in a specific area, for instance pediatrics. Even so most assistants perform any duty that they are called upon to complete, including:
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Readying patients for teeth cleanings and treatments
- Preparing and sterilizing instruments for dentists
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Giving instruments to dentists during procedures
- Readying X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants deviate by state, so consult with the Alaska dental board for your state’s mandates. Assistants dealing with X-ray machines more than likely will have to be licensed and certified. Many dental assistants who are either required or choose to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam provided by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
The Function of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the job of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the most significant difference is undoubtedly that the dental hygienist works more independently. As earlier mentioned, the dental assistant works with and in support of the dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also assisting the Elmendorf Afb AK practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are often the initial person a patient sees when called from the waiting area. They examine every patient’s gums and teeth and report their findings to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s duties can include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Instructing patients about oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in almost all states, dental hygienists must have graduated from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They also must pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam as well as any state licensure exams. After they have fulfilled these requirements they are considered fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Assistant and Hygienist Education Options
Dental assistant programs are offered at Alaska community colleges as well as trade or vocational schools. The most common credential attained is the certificate, which usually takes about a year to finish. There are fewer Associate Degree programs available, and they furnish a more comprehensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assisting courses. Due to the added responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Elmendorf Afb AK dental practices are often 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 nearly every state. They are also offered in Alaska community colleges and technical schools. Regardless of whether you are interested in training as a dental hygienist or assistant, there will be a clinical component to the training as well. A number of programs also offer internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Online Dental Assistant Programs
Selecting an online dental assistant school may be a viable option for receiving your training. Just remember that the program will not be completely online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be accessible by means of your desktop computer in the convenience of your Elmendorf Afb AK home or anywhere else on your tablet or laptop. For those working while attending school, online dental classes make education a lot more accessible. Many may even offer lower tuition rates than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened also. The clinical training can usually be performed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything necessary to obtain the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this method of learning, you may find that attending an dental hygienist online college is the right choice for you.
Issues to Cover With Dental Assistant Colleges
After you have picked the dental specialty and type of credential you wish to attain, you can begin the process of comparing Alaska schools and programs. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many students start by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Maybe they search for several online alternatives as well. Even though these may be significant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you need to address to the Elmendorf Afb AK area schools you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have included a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Assistant School Accredited? There are a number of important reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental assistant college. If you are planning to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in nearly all states. To qualify to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the education you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Employers in Elmendorf Afb AK often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, often they are not provided for non-accredited Alaska programs.
Is The Right Dental Program Offered? You can decide to train to become a dental hygienist or a dental assistant, just confirm that the Alaska college you select offers the program that you want. For the assistant program, the choices are to enroll in a certificate program or earn an Associate Degree. In order to earn a living as a hygienist, many Elmendorf Afb AK dental offices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. More advanced degrees, although not prevalent, are available. However, bear in mind that even if a school has an exceptional reputation as well as accreditation does not mean each one of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited college may have a solid accredited dental hygienist program, but may have a weaker or non-accredited assistant program. So if you are only interested in a dental assistant degree, naturally it would not be the ideal college for you.
Is Enough Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an important component of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. Many dental schools have partnerships with area dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only important that the school you choose provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently want to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, check that the Elmendorf Afb AK area school you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a regional dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are exploring have an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal means to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a real Elmendorf Afb AK dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish professional relationships in the local dentistry community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Most graduating students of dental assistant schools need assistance landing their first job. Check if the schools you are reviewing have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Elmendorf Afb AK dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classrooms Small? Find out from the Elmendorf Afb AK area programs you are evaluating how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes tend to provide a more intimate atmosphere for training where students have greater access to the instructors. Conversely, bigger classes often are impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, find out if you can monitor a few classes at the college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the degree of interaction between teachers and students before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental assistant training can fluctuate in cost dependent on the length of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, for example the reputations of the schools and whether they are private or public also come into play. But along with the tuition there are other substantial expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of programs, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to find out what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in Elmendorf Afb AK.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental college, you must make sure that the assistant program offers classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and need to go to classes near your Elmendorf Afb AK home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online school, you will still be required to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up policy is if you should have to miss any classes due to work, illness or family responsibilities.
Why Did You Want to Become a Dental Assistant?When getting ready to interview for a Dental Assisting job, it's a good idea to review questions you might be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers frequently ask Dental Assisting applicants is "What made you decide on Assisting as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not just the personal reasons you may have for becoming a Dental Assistant, but also what attributes and skills you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to Assisting, as well as a certain number of typical interview questions, so you need to organize several approaches about how you want to respond to them. Since there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the abilities you have that make you an outstanding Dental Assistant and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down several ideas and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.
Find the Ideal Dental Assistant College near Elmendorf Afb AK
Picking the right dental assistant program is crucial if you wish to take the CDA examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are a number of alternatives offered to acquire your training and it takes a fairly 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 programs generally obtain a Certificate. Dental Assistants usually require approximately one year of study before they enter the job market. When obtaining a certificate or degree you can choose to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training or credential you elect to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the ideal choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Elmendorf Afb AK.
Tell Me About Elmendorf Afb Alaska
Structure of the United States Armed Forces
The chain of command leads from the President (as commander-in-chief) through the Secretary of Defense down to the newest recruits. The United States armed forces are organized through the United States Department of Defense, which oversees a complex structure of joint command and control functions with many units reporting to various commanding officers. The following is an incomplete list of the various major military units, commands, and DOD offices and agencies, including civilian and military chains of command.
Additional Alaska Cities of Interest
Elmendorf Afb AK Dental Schools - BingNews Search results
Army soldier, graffiti artist is making his mark at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and on Anchorage streets
For mural artist and soldier Spc. Andrew Garcia, the view from Point Woronzof is getting better all the time. Garcia has painted here occasionally for three years. With his headphones on and his spray ...
A graffiti artist and Army soldier is making his mark on Anchorage streets and JBER halls
Increasingly around Anchorage, where the 26-year-old active-duty soldier wants to make his home after his Army commitment ends, people are noticing his work. Some reach out to tha ...
Impactful vision, extraordinary resolve: The restructuring and transformation of the Alaska Guard’s 207th Aviation Regiment
JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska — The renowned innovation strategist ... and sending current Soldiers to aviation training schools to prepare them for upcoming federal missions that ...
This day in history, Sept. 22
In 1989, the Irish Republican Army bombed the Royal Marines School of Music in ... personnel crashed on takeoff from Elmendorf Air Force Base near Anchorage, Alaska, killing all 24 people aboard.
Remembering fallen Yukla 27 crew
22, 2020, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, to honor the 24 Canadian ... “I was in the 7th grade on my way to school and I remember seeing the smoke plume,” said U.S. Air Force ...
Hoverboard-Riding Dentist, Found Guilty of Fraud, Is Sentenced to 12 Years
In their case against Seth Lookhart, Alaska prosecutors included video of the dentist on a hoverboard and pulling a tooth. Mr. Lookhart was convicted in January of fraud, unlawful dental acts and ...
Inside the Gates: Military families and virtual learning
Alaska (KTUU) - Starting the school year across the Anchorage School District has been a challenge for staff, teachers, students and families. Military families on Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson ...
MSgt Kristopher A. Kreis
Upon graduating high school he entered the Air Force in September 2000 ... 673d Logistics Readiness Squadron, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, AK.
LAWRENCE S. KINGSLEY
1977 Bachelor of Arts degree, Political Science, Utah State University, Logan 1983 Master's degree, Political Science, Central Missouri State University, Warrensburg 1984 Squadron Officer School ...