How to Find the Right Dental Assistant Training Program near Clio Alabama
Choosing the ideal dental assistant school near Clio AL is an important initial step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you need to evaluate and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than selecting the college with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the school that is nearest to your residence. There are other crucial issues to take into account also, including the school’s reputation and accreditation. Your initial step is to decide which of the 2 specialties you are most interested in receiving training for, which may be contingent on the amount of money and time that you have to invest. The most common dental assistant program generally takes about 12 months to finish for a diploma or certificate. However dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from two to three years to accomplish. Obviously with the prolonged training of a dental hygienist comes more cost. We will discuss all of these considerations and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental assistant schools you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s review the duties of both dental assistants and hygienists and the training options available.
The Function of a Dental Assistant
Dental assistants are an important part of any Clio AL dental office and can undertake a variety of duties. Their fundamental job description is to provide support to the admin staff and the dentists. Or simply put, to help keep the practice running efficiently. Some dental assistants opt to specialize and obtain certification in a particular area, for instance periodontics. However the majority of assistants carry out any job that they are asked to complete, including:
- Scheduling and verifying appointments
- Prepping patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Preparing and sterilizing instruments for dentists
- Using suction equipment to clear patients’ mouths
- Handing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Preparing X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Purchasing office and dental supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants deviate by state, so consult with the Alabama dental board for your state’s regulations. Assistants dealing with X-ray machines more than likely will need to be certified and licensed. 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 Dental Hygienists
When comparing the duties of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the biggest difference is undoubtedly that the dental hygienist works more independently. As previously mentioned, the dental assistant works with and in support of the practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the Clio AL 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 each patient’s gums and teeth and report their findings to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Instructing patients about oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in nearly 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 Examination in addition to passing any state licensure exams. After they have fulfilled these requirements they are considered fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Assistant & Hygienist Training Options
Dental assistant programs are offered at Alabama community colleges along with vocational or technical schools. The most common credential attained is the certificate, which generally takes about a year to complete. There are less Associate Degree programs available, 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 working in Clio AL dental practices 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 Alabama community colleges and technical schools. Regardless of whether you are pursuing training as a dental assistant or hygienist, there will be a practical component to the training as well. Some programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Assistant Online Training
Selecting an online dental assistant college might be a viable alternative for obtaining your education. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be completely online, since there will be a clinical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be accessible via your desktop computer in the convenience of your Clio AL home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those working while attending college, online dental classes make education far more accessible. Some may even offer lower tuition costs than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced as well. The clinical training can typically be completed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything necessary to receive the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the dedication for this method of education, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online program is the right choice for you.
Points to Ask Dental Assistant Schools
When you have picked the dental specialization and type of credential you would like to obtain, you can begin the procedure of comparing Alabama programs and schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, a number of students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Possibly they look for several online alternatives as well. Even though these may be relevant initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the Clio AL area colleges you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Assistant School Accredited? There are many important reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental assistant program. If you are intending to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a requirement in virtually all states. In order 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 receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in Clio AL typically prefer or require that job applicants 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 Alabama programs.
Is The Right Dental Program Available? You can elect to train to become a dental assistant or a dental hygienist, just make certain that the Alabama college you select has the program that’s right for you. For the assistant program, the options are to enroll in a certificate program or earn an Associate Degree. If you want to work as a hygienist, most Clio AL dental offices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. More advanced degrees, although not common, are offered. However, bear in mind that even if 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 strong accredited dental hygienist program, but might have a weaker or non-accredited assistant program. So if you are only interested in a dental assistant degree, obviously it would not be the best school for you.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an essential component of any dental training program. This applies for the online school options as well. Most dental colleges have relationships with regional dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the program you choose provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the Clio AL area program you select offers clinical rotation in an area dental practice that specializes in dental services for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental programs you are exploring sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the ideal method to obtain hands-on, clinical experience in a real Clio AL 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 programs require assistance landing their first job. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Clio AL dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Small? Find out from the Clio AL area colleges you are interested in how big on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to provide a more personal environment for training where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, larger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can attend 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 enrolling.
What is the Entire Cost of the Program? Dental assistant programs can fluctuate in cost based on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and if they are private or public also have an impact. But besides the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of schools, remember to include all of the expenses associated with your education. Most schools have financial aid departments, so make sure to check out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Clio AL.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental school, you need to make sure that the assistant program offers classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you will be working while getting your education and have to attend classes near your Clio AL home at nights or on weekends. And even if you choose an online program, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up policy is if you should have to miss any classes because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Dental Assistant?When getting ready to interview for a Dental Assistant job, it's important to consider questions you may be asked. One of the questions that interviewers often ask Dental Assistant candidates is "What compelled you to choose Assisting as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the private reasons you may have for being a Dental Assistant, but also what characteristics and skills you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to Assisting, along with a significant number of standard interview questions, so you should ready a number of approaches about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the work interests you along with the talents you have that make you an exceptional Dental Assistant and the perfiect choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but jot down some concepts and anecdotes that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.
Pick the Right Dental Assistant College near Clio AL
Picking the ideal dental assistant course is imperative if you wish to take the CDA examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are many alternatives offered to acquire 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 junior colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools generally obtain a Certificate. Dental Assistants normally require approximately 1 year of study prior to entering the job market. When pursuing a certificate or degree you can choose to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training or credential you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the ideal selection. And as a result, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Clio AL.
Tell Me About Clio Alabama
Clio is a city in Barbour County, Alabama, United States. The population was 1,399 at the 2010 census, down from 2,206 in 2000, at which time it was a town. It is the birthplace of former Alabama governor George C. Wallace, as well as Baseball Hall of Famer and current Atlanta Braves broadcaster Don Sutton.
As of the census of 2010, there were 1,399 people, 514 households, and 321 families residing in the town. The population density was 139 people per square mile (53.7/km2). There were 634 housing units at an average density of 62.7 per square mile (24.3/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 36.5% Black or African American, 32.0% White, 0.4% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 30.2% from other races, and .4% from two or more races. 36.0% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 514 households out of which 28.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.4% were married couples living together, 19.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.5% were non-families. 30.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.72 and the average family size was 3.37.
In the town the population was spread out with 26.2% under the age of 18, 12.9% from 18 to 24, 26.6% from 25 to 44, 22.4% from 45 to 64, and 11.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 31.8 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.4 males.
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