Is dental assisting a good career

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smlmar in Maryland

63 months ago

I have been an assistant for 2 1/2 years and many days , IT JUST SUCKS. We are overworked and understaffed. The three doctors are all arrogant and rude. They are all about the money, and will use you until you burn out. We don't even have a lunch break, because we have a constant schedule of patients. You have to eat your snacks when you can or you just won't get to eat.

The pay is not great either and there are no benefits. When ever the dentist decides he want to take a vacation you are out of work for the week. Or is you want to take a week off, he is less than thrilled because it messes up his schedule. He won't be able to have as heavy of a work load.

Like some of the other posters said, there is no respect given to assistants. Some days I regret that I did not go into another line of work. Some days I have no motivation to even go to work. The only thing good about the job is that the other two assistants are super nice and we get along great and look out for each other. If I didn't have them I would have quit by now.

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Love it! in Chelmsford, Massachusetts

62 months ago

I've been a dental assistant for about three years and I absolutely love it. There is never a day when I don't want to go to work. I work for 3 amazing doctors who not only care about their patients, but also about their assistants! They are very good to us. Pay us very good hourly and reward us with handsome bonuses once a month, every month! They also put a lot of money into our 401k accounts! I realize that these offices are hard to come by, but I do know there are others out there. If your fiance has a passion for dentistry, tell her to go for it!

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MissAma in Tullahoma, Tennessee

60 months ago

I am wanting to go into Dental Assisting. I have to say that this site has brought me down. However I still plan on going through with it, if I don't like it I can always go for dental hygiene.

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jane in Buffalo, New York

60 months ago

don;t let all the negative comments get to you- the first dentist i worked for was a nightmare- she had the nerve to tell me at my review that maybe i should rethink this career for myself but prior to that she was praising my work- i was saying to myself you got a lot of nerve - she said that so she could justify only giving me a 20 cent raise per hour- i was like i am out of here-i am not going to let this doctoe tell me i shoudn;t be a da- i worked to hard and studied to long to let her get to me - so i left and now i work for a great dentist who pays well and doesn't say stuff like this to me ever---good luck- great dentists to work for are out there

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Helenda in san francisco, California

60 months ago

Dental assisting is a good career,but its hard to find place that fits you.You will be working with humans who have feelings.You will be between doctors and patients.If a doctor has bad day and he/ she has bad patient,watch out.If you find good employer/dentist and you and rest of your dental team will be team players,goal oriented, you are the Winner .
Good luck.

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Smile for me. in Boca Raton, Florida

60 months ago

jane in Buffalo, New York said: don;t let all the negative comments get to you- the first dentist i worked for was a nightmare- she had the nerve to tell me at my review that maybe i should rethink this career for myself but prior to that she was praising my work- i was saying to myself you got a lot of nerve - she said that so she could justify only giving me a 20 cent raise per hour- i was like i am out of here-i am not going to let this doctoe tell me i shoudn;t be a da- i worked to hard and studied to long to let her get to me - so i left and now i work for a great dentist who pays well and doesn't say stuff like this to me ever---good luck- great dentists to work for are out there

I agree, a lot of dentist play games and try to belittle you and make you feel stupid. You give me inspiration that there may be a nice DDS out there some place in this world. But- Not enough to go around these days, it feels as if this career is becoming saturated with assistant and not enough good dentists. I met a great Dentist the other day, but he is retired! Why are all the schools stating DA are high in demand... What LIARS! LOL

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disappointed in Cleveland, Ohio

60 months ago

I will tell you that in this area of the country this field sinks!!! I am not just giving a personal comment either. The offices here do not pay very well. I would like to put this out there also- most of the offices in Cleveland (in my experience and in almost all of the want ads in the paper) are asking that the assistant not only work in the clinical area as an assistant but also as a part of the front desk. Dentists are very, repeat, very cheap and they'll do anything to save on cost. That means The Assistant has to pick up more work. The Dentist wants nothing to do with anything but the work in the dental chair. I have my CDA and Coronal Polishing certs and I am still very under paid. Please look into this field before you waste your time and money.

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Stacy Randolph in troy, Illinois

60 months ago

smlmar in Maryland said: I have been an assistant for 2 1/2 years and many days , IT JUST SUCKS. We are overworked and understaffed. The three doctors are all arrogant and rude. They are all about the money, and will use you until you burn out. We don't even have a lunch break, because we have a constant schedule of patients. You have to eat your snacks when you can or you just won't get to eat.

The pay is not great either and there are no benefits. When ever the dentist decides he want to take a vacation you are out of work for the week. Or is you want to take a week off, he is less than thrilled because it messes up his schedule. He won't be able to have as heavy of a work load.

Like some of the other posters said, there is no respect given to assistants. Some days Ia regret that I did not go into another line of work. Some days I have no motivation to even go to work. The only thing good about the job is that the other two assistants are super nice and we get along great and look out for each other. If I didn't have them I would have quit by now.

I agree with you. I am also a Dental asst. I do not understand why we don't get paid more besides not having more school. The dentist's are real jerks. I would love to meet one who isn't.

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JennBlankenship@comcast.net in Nashville, Tennessee

60 months ago

JennBlankenship@comcast.net in Nashville, Tennessee said: I am a new dental assistant just outof school and I CAN NOT FIND a position, and to know I owe 13000.00 dollars and not be able to find a job I feel I made a very huge mistake. I worke for 320 hours for free on extern and was treated horible but I knew if I did not take it I would not graduate! I wish I had never went to KAPLAN!!!!! QUOTE]

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ALL DA'S NEED RESPECT in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

60 months ago

Giving a DDS a licenses, is giving them a licenses to ROB & STEEL. Almost ALL are thieves. If not for DA's they would not have a practice. When you enter the office you are entering into a hrly relationship, with abuse!
Neither OSHA nor the Government monitors the Dental Dirty Crooks, they need to be REGULATED! I have seen so much stuff that if I was to write a book I would have to go into hiding for life. I have seen them charge their own parents, {who paid for their education}, take the last $$ of the elderly, do work that is not needed. They claim to be so high and mighty. You all are correct, 98% do NOT provide benefits. If you need work done they make you pay for it, or refuse to help. They are predigest in all breeds. They do not follow HOSA Laws. It is sad because it needs to be looked into. Talking cross-contamination!
My family asked to follow my footsteps, I refused to allow it.
If you say Kaplan is regret! Please don't go to Sanford Brown Inst. They are a Rip-off!!
THINK AGAIN ABOUT THE DISAPOINTING CAREER AS A “DENTAL ASSISTANT” I Have 20+ yrs. I am trying to get out.
Good Luck to All DA’s

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Neptune in Elk Grove, California

59 months ago

wow. I had no idea that life as a da was like this. I was thinking about entering in this career in the spring. As of right now, I'm still deciding whether vocational or community college is the best way to go, but i had no idea it was like this......

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Unhappy CDA in Brantford, Ontario

59 months ago

All of these comments are so True!! I have been a CDA for 3.5 years and I totally regret it. Being a dental assistant is just a glorified maid. We do all the dirty work and get NO respect at all for it. The Dentists are all Money hungry and do not care about you at all.They overwork you, do not care if you ever get a break and make it very well known to you that you are completley disposible. I laugh when the new girls come in smiling and eager to please not truly knowing what they are getting themselves into. I am sorry that I spent my time and money on schooling for this position only to be disappointed in the end. My only advise for anyone considering to be a dental assistant is..... RUN WHILE YOU STILL CAN!!!!!!

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jane in Buffalo, New York

59 months ago

i also have been a da for 3 years there was a time that i did work for a dentist from hell and felt like a glorified cleaning lady as you put it and worked ridiculous long long hours but i thought - i studied to hard and to long to let one docotr sway me from this career choice- the docotr even had the nerve , the gull to tell me maybe i should rethink this career choice for myself-at my review she said this-i was thinking to myself your nuts lady- so i foind a better-nicer office small and qauint and work reasonable hours so for everyone out there considering being a da don;t let all the negative comments scare you- there are great doc;s and offices out there---good luck!!!

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Pacman in Oakland, California

59 months ago

I hate being a dental assistant, we get no respect from the dentist. We work so hard and we don't ever earn any credit for the work we do for their dumb asses. There are no raises or any health plan, no pay vacation, or even paid holiday. Come on doctor! we are human too. I feel like if there are no assistant during chairside, they wouldn't even make it through the day.
I think dental assistant should come to together and form a union or something to fight for our rights. Cause what they are doing to us are really messed up.

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jane in Buffalo, New York

59 months ago

then why my i ask are you a da if you hate it so much-- nit all doc;s are asses as you put it - the doc i work for pays us holiday,vacation pay( i used up my vacation for a week this past july put he decided he was going to take a week off in september- i got paid for it---nice huh-- plus xmas and new years bonus- true i don;t get health insurance but i get all the other perks- please no union-- i have hada couple of jobs that involved unions and all they do is ---nothing for you-- just take your hard earned money-- example places have closed-peolpe laid off because of unions- thanks but no thanks--

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da in la in Laverne, Oklahoma

59 months ago

I work for a great dentist. I live in a very small town and this is a small office. I do all the cleaning and the maintenance on everything. My boss appreciates me and tells me. She will even take out the trash and help clean up the operatories. She is awesome. I am worried because I am wanting to make a move to New Braunfels, TX. It is near my kids and grandkids. All the comments on here make me want to stay right where I am.

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jane in Buffalo, New York

59 months ago

i would stay right where you are-- if you have the luck of working for a great dds then stay---great dds to work for are far and few---stay where you are !!!!

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Young DA in Reno, Nevada

56 months ago

I agree with your fiances dad's friends I feel I get no respect, bad pay, no benefits, doctor's just sit there and talk crap about everyone every chance they get. The funny thing is growing up I wanted to be a dental assistant because I had the nicest dentist ever and saw how she treated her staff and patients. When I first started working at the office I am at (2 yrs now) I really liked the people I worked for, but after a while I saw their true colors I feel they are superficial, even to thier patients. It drives me crazy. I feel I am young enough to maybe switch to hygiene, or maybe even switch careers.It is sad when you see commercials for career colleges and hear about the respect and self gradification you will feel then read a whole page like this. Just hope she gets lucky in finding a good place to work.

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jamie

56 months ago

davidmg in Baldwinsville, New York said: My fiance is considering becoming a dental assistant in Syracuse NY. Her father has several dentists as clients in his business, He's telling her that his friends say dental assisting is a dead end job with bad pay no benefits no future and no respect. That is contrary to what i have found but shes questioning her plans. I need some input from young people in the field. Any information or experiences would be appreciated. Thankyou

i love my job and would not give it up for anything....yes there are some a...holes out ther to work for but whenyou find the right office you cant beat the rewards... i have been in the field for 10 years and love it.i started out with little pay but now make 55+ a year wich may not be good to some but it is great for me...

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Stacsi in Brooklyn, New York

56 months ago

Forums like these are so good,i'm trying to figure out what job in the medical field I want and da was an option and I saw a job ad for a da job and it said no benefits,now I see this is common and will probably not go into this field.

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pattie in Los Angeles, California

55 months ago

davidmg in Baldwinsville, New York said: My fiance is considering becoming a dental assistant in Syracuse NY. Her father has several dentists as clients in his business, He's telling her that his friends say dental assisting is a dead end job with bad pay no benefits no future and no respect. That is contrary to what i have found but shes questioning her plans. I need some input from young people in the field. Any information or experiences would be appreciated. Thankyou

Well I have been assisting for about 18 years And I can agree with everyone else Doctors don't care about their employees I recently had a situation the doctor that I have worked for about 3 years sold the practice and didn't even have the decency to let use know ahead of time so that we could start looking for another job she have been selling for about 6 months prior and didn't say a word till about 2days before and only b-cus someone in the building accidentally mentioned the other Dr's name to the front office so now we are looking but but have not had any luck the new Dr works only about one or two days out of the week so were kind of stuck for now...so she didn't even care that we have family and bills to pay and right before the holidays I can honestly say that I have been really disappointed

I also work for another office been there for about 9 years no ins., no bonus and Dr takes vacations and lots of days off so that's why i had to get another job they just don't care where's the luv your job is like suppose to be like Ur second family there's just no loyalty Dr's not what u think don't let those couple of good comments fool u because its like one in a million trust me go to college not trade schools

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love the dental field in Huntington Beach, California

55 months ago

I've been in the field for 30 years, and I really love it. It pains me to hear about those who have been turned off because of poor working conditions/pay/treatment. I am here to say that you need never put up with that...be picky when looking for a job and don't settle for that kind of mistreatment and disrespect. Dentists who could care less about who they hire reflect that in everything they do...this is not the kind of dentist you want to work for. If you enjoy the field you will find...and yes they are out there...great offices because there are a lot of dentists who have a good, sound, business mind. They realize the importance of a well educated and highly skilled dental assistant. Do you really think dentists can work by themselves??? You have the power to increase their production...they need you if they want to build a great practice. Notice too, how many offices are looking for a "Team-Oriented" individual...the working climate must be a positive one for a practice to thrive (patients stick around where this is so) Please remember, no office is perfect, but I know from experience, there ARE lots of great offices out there. Keep up your clinical and communication skills, and find that office where you will be well compensated! :)

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Becca in Bellevue, Washington

55 months ago

I agree with what asses DDS are, I have been talked down to,sworn at, had things thrown and have worked for dentist that have their assistants do work that is illegal because they want to get back to their MySpace or talk on the phone to their friends. I have seen things dropped on the floor and picked up and put in a pt. mouth. I have seen the DDS sneeze on the instruments cut her finger and got blood in her pts. mouth and didn't tell her. Lie to ederly and talk down to pts. that don't understand. Don't do it, find a career where you are treated with respect. I loved the pts and the work I did, but haven't found a DDS that respects their staff.

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jane in Buffalo, New York

55 months ago

dds i worked for is like the one you described becca in bellevue--the one i worked for was constantly behind schedule because as you said talking on the phone- playing games on the computer -when i would put a note in front of her that patient is getting inpatient she got all ugly about it- well how would you like be sitting in the chair for a half hour after the doc gave you the injection to numb up- sorry doesn;t take half hour- and why is it my fault when your schedule fell apart-it happens - had enough so i left- found a great office and great doc- they are out there--don;t give up!!!!

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DentalGuru2009 in Richmond, Illinois

55 months ago

To answer the question: "Is dental assisting a good career?".....
Though , personally I like it. I would
not recommend it to my daughter. I don't know if I'd even consider it a career really , perhaps a job. Actually when people ask what I do I tell them dentistry is my "field"
Not sure what the difference is there, but just the idea of it.
If I could go back- I would be a dentist. Never EVER did I , or do I , have any interest in Hygiene.

I have many outside interests other than dentistry, but I would enjoy being a UltraDent rep ! Love their stuff.

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In and Out in Chicago, Illinois

55 months ago

davidmg in Baldwinsville, New York said: My fiance is considering becoming a dental assistant in Syracuse NY. Her father has several dentists as clients in his business, He's telling her that his friends say dental assisting is a dead end job with bad pay no benefits no future and no respect. That is contrary to what i have found but shes questioning her plans. I need some input from young people in the field. Any information or experiences would be appreciated. Thankyou

It's not totally true. It takes many years to really get ahead as a dental assistant. You have to remember they are at the bottom of the totem pole. Assistants are not respected or paid well in most cases. It all depends who you work for, because when it comes right down to it, if the dentist is a j---, no matter how good you are or how well the practice is doing, you will not reap the fruit of your labor.
If your lucky enough to find a dentist who respects his assistants and values their work and the practice as a whole, be thankful and don't abuse it.

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DentalGuru2009 in Richmond, Illinois

55 months ago

In and Out- nicely put!

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In and Out in Chicago, Illinois

55 months ago

DentalGuru2009 in Richmond, Illinois said: In and Out- nicely put!

Thanks Guru.

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Nichole in Saint Louis, Missouri

55 months ago

princess in Voorhees, New Jersey said: I regret becoming a dental assistant everyday. It takes alot out of you and you don't get treated with respect. The pay stinks even though I have my RDA for expanded functions. Dental hygiene is the way to go, they produce for the dentist so they tend to get much more respect. Oh and yes... about 97% of dentists are real jerks and can be very cheap also ( :

I have been an assistant for 21 years. I have been happy maybe 4 of those years.I was very close to getting out of the field then i started my new job 3 months ago. The Dentist is actually a decent human being and does great work.98% of the Dentist out there have a huge chip on their shoulder. You know what they say " The ones that could not make Medical School went to Dental School"

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DentalGuru2009 in Richmond, Illinois

55 months ago

Funny about the "medical -school flunkies" . Looking back at all the docs- that does make sense.
The happier ones always purposely went into dentistry.
(And those guys wanted to be called by their first name - not doctor)

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Nichole in Saint Louis, Missouri

55 months ago

Thank you for the comment:} It is really true my flat mate is a Dr.. he was telling me how their scores were so low that had to do dental He He. Do you work for an ass hole at this time :}

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DentalGuru2009 in Richmond, Illinois

55 months ago

The dr. I work for now is very kind & friendly. He likes me and we get along well. I call him by his first name if it is a personal conversation, but in front of pt's I say Dr.______.
He very much respects my dental knowledge, as I have been "in" dentistry longer than he and
often asks me my opinion on things.
I am truly a 'guru' and take dentistry serious, but I am also silly and fun. We have a casual office.

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Nichole in Saint Louis, Missouri

55 months ago

Good for you..he sounds like one in a million. A nice Dentist is very hard to find :0

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Gracie

55 months ago

Ive worked as a Dental assistant for 3 yrs now. I LOVE IT! Don't get me wrong, there are days that are stressful, but that's every career. Anyways my boss is awesome. Treats his patients so well and is protective of his staff. He wants a happy staff and happy patients. The pay is great, Benefits and all that fun stuff. He paid for me to go to school and get my license. Everyday is different, definitely doesn't get boring. Its hard to find a nice doctor to work for... I lucked out! I disagree with the whole "dead end job" thing. I am a single mom and I am going to school for Dental Hygienist, working as a assistant has helped! My daughter's father is a complete tool and has paid not one dime in child support, which is fine (she doesn't deserve is jerk as a father) because thanks to my dental assistant position Ive been able to pay for my car, rent, food, clothes, school and still have money left over to spend on whatever. And best part is, I ONLY work 4 days a week. I highly recommend dental assisting as a career. BUT JUST MAKE SURE YOU LOOK AROUND BECAUSE I HAVE A FRIEND WHO WORKS IN ANOTHER OFFICE AND HER BOSS IS CHEAP! SHE ONLY GETS $12 AND HOUR.

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dmarz in Washington, District of Columbia

55 months ago

I was considering to go to the dental assistant program here in Maryland. I have been looking more for an accredited dental assistant school than just a 3 month training, which doesn't even have an externship because I thought, once graduated, it would be a lot better for me, but after reading all these comments, I am thinking twice to spend 10 months in school and more than $18,000.

I love the dental field and after seeing the demand of dental assistants nationwide, more than dental hyg, correct me if I am wrong, I decided to go for it. Also, I have heard from some people, who are dental hyg, that is better to gain some experience as dental assistant and then go for dental hyg. Dental hyg school can be overwhelming with no experience.

I need some advice from everyone. Does anyone know if it's worthed to spend time and money in an accredited progam? or is it enough to attend one of these short trainings to be able to gain some experience and then go for dental hyg?. Is it easy to find a job with the short training? because I have seen many adds that look for certified, experience, and x-ray certified dental assistants.

PLEASE HELP!!!!

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DentalGuru2009 in Richmond, Illinois

55 months ago

I know a tremendous amount about dentistry, though, I never went to dental asst school. I learned
from a few great docs in my early years. This took many years. Not sure if in today's offices you
can find that kind of training.
Assisting school sounds like a good start , but finding the "right" office for externship is key. Without
those willing to really explain and train you - it is worthless.
There is just so much that without hands-on training you can grasp.
If you understand "dentistry" well, (not just dental -assisting) you will be respected by the doctor....
There is a difference.

School+ find a doctor willing to train (perhaps an older doc)

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salliebear in mexia, Texas

55 months ago

Unhappy CDA in Brantford, Ontario said: All of these comments are so True!! I have been a CDA for 3.5 years and I totally regret it. Being a dental assistant is just a glorified maid. We do all the dirty work and get NO respect at all for it. The Dentists are all Money hungry and do not care about you at all.They overwork you, do not care if you ever get a break and make it very well known to you that you are completley disposible. I laugh when the new girls come in smiling and eager to please not truly knowing what they are getting themselves into. I am sorry that I spent my time and money on schooling for this position only to be disappointed in the end. My only advise for anyone considering to be a dental assistant is..... RUN WHILE YOU STILL CAN!!!!!!

I wish I had known about this forum before I went to training for DA. I wasted two thousand bucks. Threw it out the window. The pay sucks. And that is if you can even get a job. I feel terribly sorry for the ones who really can't afford to spend money training for a job they will probably never get. thanks for your honesty.

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me in az in Peoria, Arizona

55 months ago

With any job there is always going to be people that we have to answer to. Everyone has a boss. I do not see being a DA any different. In the medical field I would suppose that a DA could be compared to an LPN since her boss is the RN and then the doctor. I see LPN as a nice little career with a year of schooling that gets you into the workforce, and that is respectable. People here seem to compare being a DA to working at Mc Donalds or something. I think being a DA is respectable. I believe if you know your place, show from within your happiness with who you are, then you will be respected. It is when people want to be more, and they do not know how to get along with authority that people began to hate their jobs.

I like one of the previous post were the DA says, "hey, because of this job I am my own women, who can pay my bills and take care of my kid." That is very respectable. I say if DA is too low for you than maybe you should be the office manager, try to go for it or maybe if you feel the doctor does not care enough for the patients than go back to school and become the doctor, but please do not discourage people from wanting to earn an honest living doing something!

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jamie in York, Pennsylvania

55 months ago

I am a CDA and a EFDA. I have been inthe field for over ten years. I have a lot of experience working with different offices and for different doctors.I also teach at one of those 12 month programs. My students get hired at a better rate and have a better grasp on the anatomy and terms that someone who jsut went for three months somehwere.I also work partime in a office and do all the hiring and the Dr will not let me hire someone with out dental experience. You will read all about the negative blogs on here and get discouraged. I have work hard all of my career and am very sucessful and have the respect from all the doctors that I have worked with. If you work hard and have a good attitude you will be sucessful and not misreable in your job. You may find one or two Drs that are jerks to have as a boss but the good ones are out there. my advice is to shadow as many offices that you can so you can see the varitey that is out there.

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Whitney in Augusta, Georgia

55 months ago

davidmg in Baldwinsville, New York said: My fiance is considering becoming a dental assistant in Syracuse NY. Her father has several dentists as clients in his business, He's telling her that his friends say dental assisting is a dead end job with bad pay no benefits no future and no respect. That is contrary to what i have found but shes questioning her plans. I need some input from young people in the field. Any information or experiences would be appreciated. Thankyou

Just found your post today. I hope you been moving in the direction of a great career. As a rule, any low end "assistant/technician" job is going to be on the low end of the pay scale. It's up to you to do your research (and apparently you are) and be realistic about what you can do with the money you will earn (i.e. raise children, put money away for retirement, etc.). If you are truly interested in the dental field, dental hygienists make good money, at least for supporting one person or as part of a working couple. Best of luck to you. Whitney

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In and Out in Chicago, Illinois

55 months ago

Gracie said: Ive worked as a Dental assistant for 3 yrs now. I LOVE IT! Don't get me wrong, there are days that are stressful, but that's every career. Anyways my boss is awesome. Treats his patients so well and is protective of his staff. He wants a happy staff and happy patients. The pay is great, Benefits and all that fun stuff. He paid for me to go to school and get my license. Everyday is different, definitely doesn't get boring. Its hard to find a nice doctor to work for... I lucked out! I disagree with the whole "dead end job" thing. I am a single mom and I am going to school for Dental Hygienist, working as a assistant has helped! My daughter's father is a complete tool and has paid not one dime in child support, which is fine (she doesn't deserve is jerk as a father) because thanks to my dental assistant position Ive been able to pay for my car, rent, food, clothes, school and still have money left over to spend on whatever. And best part is, I ONLY work 4 days a week. I highly recommend dental assisting as a career. BUT JUST MAKE SURE YOU LOOK AROUND BECAUSE I HAVE A FRIEND WHO WORKS IN ANOTHER OFFICE AND HER BOSS IS CHEAP! SHE ONLY GETS $12 AND HOUR.

You are very lucky. You found a nice doctor to work for. Dental assisting is an awesome career, but for some unless they find a good fit it can be debilitating in every way.
It is important to love what you do and enjoy the work place.
wish you lots of years of prosperity in you job.

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mindy in Etters, Pennsylvania

54 months ago

jamie in York, Pennsylvania said: I am a CDA and a EFDA. I have been inthe field for over ten years. I have a lot of experience working with different offices and for different doctors.I also teach at one of those 12 month programs. My students get hired at a better rate and have a better grasp on the anatomy and terms that someone who jsut went for three months somehwere.I also work partime in a office and do all the hiring and the Dr will not let me hire someone with out dental experience. You will read all about the negative blogs on here and get discouraged. I have work hard all of my career and am very sucessful and have the respect from all the doctors that I have worked with. If you work hard and have a good attitude you will be sucessful and not misreable in your job. You may find one or two Drs that are jerks to have as a boss but the good ones are out there. my advice is to shadow as many offices that you can so you can see the varitey that is out there.

i have similar experiance as you do, minus the tech school teaching. would you mind sharing your hourly compensation? what are you recommending your students request? thanks
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jamie in York, Pennsylvania

54 months ago

Our students are starting out around 12- 13 dollars an hour with their x-ray cert. It depends on the area and the office. Now what I make an hour is closer to 30 but I have my EFDA

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cassandra in Richmond, Virginia

54 months ago

Thanks for all of the comments. I was going to start a program: Dental Assisting but I think that is a not the right decision. The cost is $24,000 for an AAS degree. As a newly divorced Mom making 12 to 13 dollars an hours will not even cover the bills. Thanks for your candid opinions.

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Alicia in Minneapolis, Minnesota

54 months ago

davidmg in Baldwinsville, New York said: My fiance is considering becoming a dental assistant in Syracuse NY. Her father has several dentists as clients in his business, He's telling her that his friends say dental assisting is a dead end job with bad pay no benefits no future and no respect. That is contrary to what i have found but shes questioning her plans. I need some input from young people in the field. Any information or experiences would be appreciated. Thankyou

Hi!
well I have been dental assistant for 14 yrs & I made about 45,000 this year! I never intendeds to do this for long term but it has served me well! I live in minneapolis/St. Paul,mn which is a decent size city... I am 33 yrs old.. own a townhome by myself, drive a nice vehicle & still live decently & have extra $ to travel now & then....it may not be for everyone cause some DR's can be difficult to work with but you learn to demand the respect!! you will make NO money if you work in small rural areas & if you work for a specialist they pay more! I work for a endodontist ...also a great aspect is that you will always be able to find a job anywhere you move!!! i have never had a problem & I am doing alot better than quite a few of my friends that have bachelor or masters degrees who have been layed off do to company downsizeing!! hope this helps!! Alicia

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Alicia in Minneapolis, Minnesota

54 months ago

12 $$ an hour?? who is paying that?? that is terrible!! I make in the 25-30 range!!

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Allisha in Apollo, Pennsylvania

53 months ago

I can't believe how many bad comments are on here about a Dental Assistant. I'm starting the program for it next Fall. This site has really brought me down about it. The pay may not be GREAT but It's something to live off of. You'd get to see new people everyday. How can everyone be this pissed about where they work? If your dentist is a dick then leave?
I was going to go for hygiene..If I like the dental field I will continue.But the program for hygiene ISN'T easy to get into! The classes you take for it are very hard. EVERY job has bad. Nurses wipe asses and scrub balls( good things as well of course) sonographers give internal sonograms and such. EVERY job can be stressful. It's better than minimum wage.

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Allisha in Apollo, Pennsylvania

53 months ago

jamie in York, Pennsylvania said: Our students are starting out around 12- 13 dollars an hour with their x-ray cert. It depends on the area and the office. Now what I make an hour is closer to 30 but I have my EFDA

12-13 to start out sounds great! I hope I can find an entry level job whenever I graduate. Does getting your EFDA make a big difference then? I'm considering going for it when all is said and done maybe someday back for hygiene.Not sure yet.

30 an hour is awesome though!

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DivaTeeth in York, Pennsylvania

53 months ago

Hi everyone,
I am in school for Dental Assisting and got a job about 4 weeks ago. I got hired to do sterilization and hated it. Now I am being trained on the job for assisting. I get $11/hr salary. work Mon-Thurs., no lunch breaks. I am wondering if this pay is fair since I have no prior experience. What's the average pay for someone just starting out and when should I expect a raise? I will be getting my X-ray cert in the next months. I've been told I am doing extremely well, and learning very fast. I know I have to prove myself, but I don't want to get so discouraged and burnt out after just starting. I love the people I work with, yet feel very unappreciated and disposable at times. I just want to do the best job I can and be a team player. I feel if a dentist really values his employees he will certainly show it and make sure he treats them with respect no matter what their position is in the dental field. We each have a job to do. Just as the hand cannot function without the arm and the arm cannot without the shoulder and the neck not without the head and so on and so on... If everyone took a team player approach, including the boss the place would be a better environment for everyone, even the patients.

There are different levels of respect for authority, although we all should be treated with respect as human beings, and appreciated for the position we are in and the job we each fill.

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Allisha in Apollo, Pennsylvania

53 months ago

DivaTeeth in York, Pennsylvania said: Hi everyone,
I am in school for Dental Assisting and got a job about 4 weeks ago. I got hired to do sterilization and hated it. Now I am being trained on the job for assisting. I get $11/hr salary. work Mon-Thurs., no lunch breaks. I am wondering if this pay is fair since I have no prior experience. What's the average pay for someone just starting out and when should I expect a raise? I will be getting my X-ray cert in the next months. I've been told I am doing extremely well, and learning very fast. I know I have to prove myself, but I don't want to get so discouraged and burnt out after just starting. I love the people I work with, yet feel very unappreciated and disposable at times. I just want to do the best job I can and be a team player. I feel if a dentist really values his employees he will certainly show it and make sure he treats them with respect no matter what their position is in the dental field. We each have a job to do. Just as the hand cannot function without the arm and the arm cannot without the shoulder and the neck not without the head and so on and so on... If everyone took a team player approach, including the boss the place would be a better environment for everyone, even the patients.

There are different levels of respect for authority, although we all should be treated with respect as human beings, and appreciated for the position we are in and the job we each fill.

I would think you'll get paid more after you get x-ray certified.Do you like your job now?

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