Dental Assistants

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About the Job

Assist dentist, set up equipment, prepare patient for treatment, and keep records.

It is also Called

  • Certified Dental Assistant (CDA)
  • Certified Registered Dental Assistant
  • Dental Aide
  • Dental Assistant (DA)
  • Dental Nurse
  • Dental Office Manager
  • Dentist Attendant
  • Expanded Duty Dental Assistant (EDDA)
  • Expanded Function Dental Assistant
  • Oral Surgery Assistant
View All

What They Do

  • Prepare patient, sterilize or disinfect instruments, set up instrument trays, prepare materials, or assist dentist during dental procedures.
  • Record treatment information in patient records.
  • Expose dental diagnostic x-rays.
  • Take and record medical and dental histories and vital signs of patients.
  • Assist dentist in management of medical or dental emergencies.
  • Provide postoperative instructions prescribed by dentist.
  • Instruct patients in oral hygiene and plaque control programs.
  • Order and monitor dental supplies and equipment inventory.
  • Clean teeth, using dental instruments.
  • Fabricate and fit orthodontic appliances and materials for patients, such as retainers, wires, or bands.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: CRS.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Conventional interests, but also prefer Realistic and Social environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Relationships, but also value Support and Working Conditions in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Education Required

Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Wages

In 2016, the average annual wage in Kansas City, MO-KS was $36,920 with most people making between $21,220 and $52,320

Outlook

9.72%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 1,070 people in Kansas City, MO-KS. It is projected that there will be - employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 104 openings due to growth and about 265 replacement openings for approximately 369 total annual openings.



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