How to Choose the Best Dental Assistant College near Stoneham Maine
Choosing the right dental assistant school near Stoneham ME is an essential initial step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you need to assess and compare your school options. There is far more to performing your due diligence than picking the dental assistant program with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the one that is closest to your residence. There are other important factors to consider as well, such as the school’s accreditation and reputation. Your initial step is to decide which of the 2 credentials you are most interested in obtaining training for, which may depend on the amount of money and time that you are willing to invest. The most common dental assistant program normally takes about 12 months to complete for a certificate or diploma. On the other hand dental assistants may also earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from two to three years to complete. Naturally with the more extensive training comes more cost. We will talk about all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental assistant schools you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s explore the duties of dental assistants and further discuss the training options offered.
The Role of Dental Assistants
Dental assistants are an indispensable part of any Stoneham ME dental office and can perform a variety of functions. Their primary job description is to provide support to the dentists and the administrative staff. Or simply put, to help keep the practice operating efficiently. Many dental assistants choose to specialize and earn certification in a particular area, such as pediatrics. Even so the majority of assistants perform any task that they are asked to fulfill, for example:
- Setting and verifying appointments
- Readying patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Preparing and sterilizing instruments for dentists
- Using suction equipment to clear patients’ mouths
- Giving instruments to dentists during procedures
- Prepping X-ray machines and handling X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants differ by state, so consult with the Maine dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants working with X-ray machines most likely will need to be licensed and certified. Most dental assistants who are either required or choose to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Assistant Education Options
Dental assistant programs are provided at Maine community colleges along with trade or vocational schools. As previously mentioned, the most frequent credential acquired is the certificate, which generally takes about 1 year to finish. There are fewer Associate Degree programs available, and they provide a more expansive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assisting courses. These programs can take anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to complete and must be accredited by the CDA in virtually every state. They are also offered in Maine vocational schools and community colleges. Regardless of whether you are interested in earning a certificate or a degree as a dental assistant, there will be a practical component to the training also. Many programs also offer internships with Stoneham ME dental practices or dentists.
Dental Assistant Online Training
Choosing an online dental assistant program might be a good option for getting your training. Just remember that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the balance of your classes will be available by means of your personal computer in the convenience of your Stoneham ME home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental classes make education much more accessible. Some may even have lower tuition rates than their traditional competitors. And added expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced also. The practical training can usually be completed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything needed to receive the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this method of education, you may find that attending an dental hygienist online school is the right option for you.
Topics to Ask Dental Assistant Programs
After you have selected the dental specialization and kind of credential you want to obtain, you can start the procedure of comparing Maine schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of potential students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the schools. Maybe they search for several online alternatives as well. Even though these are significant initial factors to consider, there are several additional questions that you should address to the Stoneham ME area colleges you are looking at in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the best dental assistant school for you.
Is the Dental Assistant College Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only select an accredited dental assistant school. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually all states. In order to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in Stoneham ME often prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And last, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not obtainable for non-accredited Maine programs.
Is The Proper Dental Program Offered? You can opt to train to become a dental assistant by earning either a Certificate or an Associate Degree. Just verify that the Stoneham ME school you select offers the program that’s right for you. However, bear in mind that even if a college has an exceptional reputation and 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 might have a weaker or non-accredited dental assistant program. So if you are solely interested in a dental assistant degree, naturally it would not be the best college for you.
Is Enough Practical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is a vital portion of any dental training program. This holds true for the online college options also. A number of dental schools have partnerships with regional dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the college you enroll in 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 have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the Stoneham ME area college you select offers clinical rotation in a regional dental practice that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Verify if the dental colleges you are evaluating have an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the best way to obtain hands-on, practical experience in a real Stoneham ME dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students create working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Most graduating students of dental assistant colleges require help getting their first job. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Stoneham ME dental community in addition to large networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Smaller? Check with the Stoneham ME area colleges you are looking at how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally provide a more personal setting for training where students have increased access to the instructors. On the other hand, bigger classes often are impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can attend a couple of 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 Expense of the Program? Dental assistant colleges can vary in cost depending on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the schools and whether they are public or private also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when comparing the cost of schools, remember to add all of the expenses related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to check out what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in Stoneham ME.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental school, you must confirm that the assistant program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is particularly true if you will be working while receiving your education and need to attend classes near your Stoneham ME home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online college, you will still need to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Considering a Dental Assistant Program near Stoneham ME?
If you are considering a dental assistant school in the Stoneham Maine area, following is some interesting history and background information about your future campus location that you may find useful.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 34.74 square miles (89.98 km2), of which, 33.83 square miles (87.62 km2) of it is land and 0.91 square miles (2.36 km2) is water.
As of the census of 2010, there were 236 people, 110 households, and 68 families residing in the town. The population density was 7.0 inhabitants per square mile (2.7/km2). There were 344 housing units at an average density of 10.2 per square mile (3.9/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 99.6% White and 0.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.4% of the population.
There were 110 households of which 17.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.9% were married couples living together, 3.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 7.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 38.2% were non-families. 30.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.15 and the average family size was 2.71.
12 Week Dental Assistant Program Stoneham Maine
Choosing the ideal dental assistant course is essential if you intend to take the CDA exam or, if required in your state, become licensed. You originally came to this website due to an interest in 12 Week Dental Assistant Program and wanting info on Dental Assistant Accredited Programs. But as we have covered, there are many alternatives available to obtain your training and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental assistant. You can obtain your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these programs typically receive a Certificate. Dental Assistants normally require roughly one year of study prior to entering the work force. When earning a certificate or degree you can elect to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of education or credential you decide to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the ideal selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental assistant in Stoneham ME.
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