Can You Become a Dental Assistant Without Schooling?
If you’re looking to enter the dental assistant field without formal schooling, you may wonder if it’s possible. The answer is yes and no. Yes, you don’t have to have a two-year degree, but no, you must attend dental assistant training programs.
Yes, you can become a dental assistant without formal schooling. Many dental assistants enter the field without a formal degree or diploma, and they can find success in the industry. Although employers prefer a formal education, it’s not always necessary. Many employers are willing to hire dental assistants with relevant job experience, obtain on-the-job training, and obtain a dental assisting certificate.
Formal schooling requires you to attend a two-year dental assisting school college program that offers an Associate’s degree in Dental Assisting. In this program, students will learn the basics of dental assisting, such as dental anatomy, dental terminology, dental office procedures, and dental materials. Students also have the opportunity to take additional classes in radiology, clinical dental assisting, and patient education. A community college or vocational school typically offers this program, which usually takes two years to complete.
In contrast, a dental assisting program is shorter and does not typically offer an Associate’s degree. This program usually takes less than a year to complete and is provided by a technical school or a dental office. In this program, students will learn the basics of dental assisting, such as dental terminology, materials, and dental office procedures. Students may also have the opportunity to take additional classes in radiology, dental instruments, and patient education. This program is a good option for those who want to enter the dental field quickly, as it is shorter and more cost-effective than a two-year program.
Many states require that dental assistants complete a dental assistant program or an on-the-job training program. These programs cover dental anatomy, patient care, and office management. However, most states require that dental assistants have some education, depending on the state’s regulations.
Dental Assistant Training Programs
To become a dental assistant in Texas, a person must obtain a certificate from the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE). This certificate is known as a Dental Assisting Certificate and is issued to individuals who have completed a dental assisting program, like Sanger Education’s 12-week dental assisting program, and have passed a written and practical examination. The TSBDE also requires the completion of an approved dental assisting program and passing a Criminal Background Check.
You must also gain dental assistant experience through volunteering or an internship. Volunteering at a dental office is a great way to gain experience and build connections in the dental field. Additionally, some dental offices may offer internships for those interested in learning more about the profession.
Online courses or dental assisting programs allow you to become a dental assistant without formal schooling (two-year degree). Many online courses have been developed specifically for dental assistants looking to enhance their skill set. These courses cover dental terminology, patient care, and infection control. Finally, you can become a dental assistant without schooling by obtaining certification. Many certifications are offered in the dental field and can help you stand out from other candidates. Certifications such as Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) or Certified Orthodontic Assistant (COA) can demonstrate your commitment to the profession and may help you land a job.
To be accepted into a dental assisting program in Texas, an individual must meet several requirements. These include having a high school diploma or GED, passing a criminal background check, and taking and passing a Board-approved dental assisting program. Additionally, individuals must complete a minimum of 400 hours of clinical experience in a supervised dental setting to be eligible for a Dental Assisting Certificate. Upon completion of the program, individuals must pass a written and practical examination to receive their certificate. Once a certificate is obtained, individuals must renew it every two years to maintain their certification.
Dental Assisting Training Programs in Waco, Texas
You can become a dental assistant without formal schooling. You can gain experience through volunteering or internships, take online courses, or obtain certification to demonstrate your commitment to the profession. With the right combination of job experience, on-the-job training, and certifications, you can enter the dental assistant field without any formal schooling. If you want to become a dental assistant, come to Sanger Education in Waco, Texas. Our 12-week dental assisting program can help launch your new career today! Learn more about our program.