Is dental assisting a good career

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jamie in York, Pennsylvania

54 months ago

yes having your EFDA can be a big help depending on the stat ou arein and the DR.

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Kay1984 in Boston, Massachusetts

54 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'm not sure what the average salary is for a CDA in Pennsylvania, but your pay seems a little on the low side. I worked in NH for a while and was making $18 an hour to start with full benefits.

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adegar in Delray Beach, Florida

53 months ago

the problem with Dental assistant job is that no one care the state is not envolve, if you are lucky and find a good dentist that pays you good money keep it because some dentist just want all the money for themselves they gave no benefits but they do large purchases with their money,MECEDES bmw AND SO ON and never cross their mine to give a bonus rase, I being a dental assistant for about 3 years and had no been luky enought to find a job with any type oF benefts I work with a ass hole dentist that is very rude treat his stuff like no one diserve to be treated and humiliate his assistant in front of his patients. because his know how hard is to get a job right now with this economic. soon I find a better place I rushing out of there, and so is every body else in that office

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oldstudent724 in New York

52 months ago

I find the last two comments very helpful and think they speak from age and experience. I'm pushing 40 and am just now finishing DA school. I have a BA in a totally unrelated field that, in this economy, isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. This is not some kind of "put down," but I don't think those employed in the medical field realize just how bad the job market is today in other professions. The medical disciplines are the only ones thriving. There are several fields that are just shriveling up - not thriving like dentistry. Many of us jumping ship are happy to take $14 an hour if it means future security. In my old career, you could find yourself unemployed for years. When you finally do get called for an interview, there are literally 100 applicants coming through the door as you leave.
So, I went back to school. At my age, DA school was quick and to the $point.
Before starting, I browsed these boards. All the threads about the hygienists being “diva's” and the doctors being “eccentric” and demanding. Do you all realize how lucky you are to be employed right now at all???? I don’t know, maybe I've just been blessed in my two offices....OR, maybe it’s just knowing what the alternatives have to offer out there in other fields. You quickly learn how to appreciate what you have. I rather like dental assisting…and I’ve held a lot of jobs in many different capacities during my life. And, heaven forbid, I love my hygienists…and even the doctors. Yes, they are very particular…but, who wants a dentist who ISN’T?!?!? I like people who take pride in their work. And, so what if a hygienist wants me to bag her instruments – I sort of assumed that’s my job as ASSISTANT. I also know that, in a pinch, she’s also the first person to jump in and lend me a hand when I need it. (continued below)

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oldstudent724 in New York

52 months ago

The only problem I have is feeling like the “old lady” who may not be able to “keep up” with the “kids." I have no visions of grandeur – I realize that being an assistant is a supporting role…and I’m fine with that.
I think a lot of the DAs that “hate” the field are the kids just out of high school, who really don’t have an idea of what having a job really means. It doesn’t matter what you do in life – there will always be someone who talks down to you, disciplines you, orders you around, or does something else you don’t like. It’s called LIFE. Unless you hit Lotto, you develop a thick skin and take as much from them as they take from you! Push the “garbage” aside and realize what's important to you in your life. And, yes, I’m sure I’ll hear comments to the contrary but, there is something to be said for life experience – no matter what field you’re in. I go to work and I do what I’m told because that’s what I'm paid to do. They take from me as much as I take from them: I do what’s necessary to help the office run smoothly and, in turn, I earn a stable income for my family. For me, THAT’S what it’s all about. I have a boss paying me a great starting wage, paid lunch, paid uniforms, free dental care, paid office outings…and she’s apologetic when the practice is hectic as she doesn’t want me to bolt out the door for good!? Someone please tell me where else you can find this today?!? My husband works in the newspaper industry – in that world? If you’re not willing to report from a cave in Afghanistan for minimum wage you can kiss your job goodbye – forget about perks like paid lunches and dental…he has to empty his own trash since they laid off the maintenance crew hahaha!
I think those who have experienced hardships in other careers would be thankful for that DA job. I think those DA’s that think their world sucks would be very surprised by what’s happening out there in other fields. There is no “golden ticket” today…

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jane in Buffalo, New York

52 months ago

you are exactly right- i agree with you 100 %- i to went back to school at 40- ish i have been a da for 3 years now and love my job and the staff i work with- granted the first office i worked in changed staff more then people change their underwear- i lasted ayear there- and i saw why peolpe were leaving left and right- long long ridiculous hours- horrible da pay - ect-- but lucked out and found a great doctor and staff-i have been there2 years now and feel like i have been there forever- we all get along-no cattiness- no backstabbing no acting like a five yearolds- love love my job!!!

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jane in Buffalo, New York

52 months ago

ageee with you 200 %--- same with me--

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jean in Belfast, United Kingdom

52 months ago

I have over 20 years experience as A dental nurse and I can honestly say I love the job! I have had the odd nasty dentist to work with but have changed jobs and found most of them are great to work with. Yes it is nice when they appreciate how hard you work and yes you do work hard! My wages are good and I get a good bonus at xmas and a thankyou at the end of the day so I am one of the lucky ones don't let anyone put you down at your work we have our rights so dont stay anywhere you are not happy and if you go for an interview for a job try to get talking to the other staff and find out what it is like to work there if you can. good luck!

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Mark Mann in Sugar Land, Texas

52 months ago

foreigner@bellsouth.net in Greensboro, North Carolina said: I have been a dental assistant for 25 yrs. 23 of them have been spent working at a dental school. The other 2 in private practice. Even though the school doesn't pay as much the benefits,retirement & job security out weight working in private practice anyday. Most dentist in private practice are jerks & are all about the money. That is why I perfer working at a dental school. Training them instead of working for them!

If you have only worked 2 years in a private dental practice, Who are you to state "Most dentist((s)sp?) in private practice are jerks & are all about the money. I am a dentist in the Houston Texas area and Houston alone has approximately 3500 dentists in private practice. Your "sour grapes" statement without any proof to back it up is very irresponsible and offensive to dentists and any other staff members who love their careers.

What is the primary and most significant attribute of a good career? Is it your salary? Of course it is! Money is why we all work. It is the source that we must use to sustain our lifestyle and to support our families. The other benefits are nice, but they don't put food on the table. Yet, bigger money always follows the risk takers. If you want to make more money, then you must take more risks yourself, and stop working for someone who already has. Otherwise, you should respect and honor those risk-takers such as dentists and other small business owners who provide honorable and fulfilling careers to their supporting employees. For more information about taking risks and making more money read the book "Automatic Wealth" by Michael Masterson.

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Mark Mann in Sugar Land, Texas

52 months ago

Neptune in Elk Grove, California said: 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......

It's not, these are just people who are venting their inadequacies and frustrations! If you make an effort to be a good employee, you will love your job and if you don't, keep looking for the right fit as a dental assistant and you will find it.

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tavia in Dallas, Texas

50 months ago

hi im octavia jones i from dallas tx. i went to school for dental back in 4 -22 -2009. ive been looking very hard im stating to give up but i not a quicker i love to learn from other the hold dental thing not very many people went to school but they have a job in the dental office . sometimes i wonder . i just want to get my hands moving in make a wonderful smile to wonderdful faces. dallas tx dental office hire who they want not caring about what a person feelings . in the hispanic ladys they have the spot over the black sister, not all the time . i love hispanic. IF ANYONE READ THIS IN WOULD LIKE TO EMAIL ME PLEASE DO SO. ambitious_jones@yahoo.com

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bree in Las Vegas, Nevada

50 months ago

hmm so im thinking of going to school to be a d.a. but everyones comments are so negative! is it really that bad :-/ i really wanted to go to school for this a nd was all hyped up about it. im 20 years old with a 1 year old daughter. do you think this would be a good start off for me being young? would it be better to work at a private practice office? the school here is not that expensive i think its only 3,500 so they say.and do all dental offices offer insurances or depends on the office? thanks a lot i hope i get feed back!

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bree in Las Vegas, Nevada

50 months ago

hmm so im thinking of going to school to be a d.a. but everyones comments are so negative! is it really that bad :-/ i really wanted to go to school for this a nd was all hyped up about it. im 20 years old with a 1 year old daughter. do you think this would be a good start off for me being young? would it be better to work at a private practice office? the school here is not that expensive i think its only 3,500 so they say.and do all dental offices offer insurances or depends on the office? thanks a lot i hope i get feed back!

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jean in Belfast, United Kingdom

50 months ago

I love my job but to tell you the truth If I were young and starting over no I wouldn't go in to dental nursing. Better to go and train as a nurse for a career. If you are thinking ahead and want to get somewhere by all means think of something else.
If you are just looking for a part time job like I have if you find yourself in a nice practice with nice staff and a boss who treats you fair you will enjoy the job. The only step up is to become a hygenist and lets face it do you really want to be scaling teeth all day how boring is that!!

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bree in Las Vegas, Nevada

50 months ago

jean in Belfast, United Kingdom said: I love my job but to tell you the truth If I were young and starting over no I wouldn't go in to dental nursing. Better to go and train as a nurse for a career. If you are thinking ahead and want to get somewhere by all means think of something else.
If you are just looking for a part time job like I have if you find yourself in a nice practice with nice staff and a boss who treats you fair you will enjoy the job. The only step up is to become a hygenist and lets face it do you really want to be scaling teeth all day how boring is that!!

what about and orthodontic assistant? do you have to take extra classes for that? would u happen to know about that?

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bree in Las Vegas, Nevada

50 months ago

and thanks for letting me know. i really want to work in the dental feild i think it would be easy. i dont have a job right now so i want to go to school for this since its a fast thing to do...im so confuseddd >:o why does everyone hate this job lol

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papillonrescuer in Richmond, Virginia

50 months ago

dmarz in Washington, District of Columbia said: 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!!!!

I am starting an accredited program in the fall but before I started I looked into hygenist school before decideding on starting dental assisting. I have finaical reasons ( 18000 is alot mine is a little over 5,000)In VA they have AS and BS for DH. I went to ODU info section which included a tour. The head of the program sent a few years as a DA before going on for her DH and then her masters. There is nothing wrong with working up the ladder. She said that being a DA helps her with patients. DH can't talk about treatment options, they mainly just clean teeth. They offer you points and class credit for being a dental assistant.

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casandra in Richmond, Virginia

50 months ago

Please check your community college for a DA program. The one in Richmond,VA is great and cost only $3000.00 a year.

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bree in Las Vegas, Nevada

50 months ago

working as a D.A do you guys see nasty things like herpies a lot?

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jensen40 in Morrison, Colorado

50 months ago

Hi there! Thank you so much for your posting! I an in the exact same position, just turned fourty and in this economy my BA degree gets me about as far as I can throw it! I have been searching for new career options and training that A) won't break my bank account (because it really wouldn't take much! B) has good future potential for continued employability & C) pays a decent living wage (not expecting to get rich here, just want to pay the bills). I have been very discouraged by all the negative postings and understand that finding the right office is key but in my years of experience I really couldn't point to one job that I have ever "loved"- the best really was someplace where I didn't mind getting up everyday and going to work instead of wishing I had the plague and couldn't make it to work. I will continue to explore this is a good option and which schools are best recommended, etc...thank you for your uplifting and realistic posting.

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Dental Guru in Genoa City, Wisconsin

49 months ago

jensen40 in Morrison, Colorado said: Hi there! Thank you so much for your posting! I an in the exact same position, just turned fourty and in this economy my BA degree gets me about as far as I can throw it! I have been searching for new career options and training that A) won't break my bank account (because it really wouldn't take much! B) has good future potential for continued employability & C) pays a decent living wage (not expecting to get rich here, just want to pay the bills). I have been very discouraged by all the negative postings and understand that finding the right office is key but in my years of experience I really couldn't point to one job that I have ever "loved"- the best really was someplace where I didn't mind getting up everyday and going to work instead of wishing I had the plague and couldn't make it to work. I will continue to explore this is a good option and which schools are best recommended, etc...thank you for your uplifting and realistic posting.

Dentistry is fun when you have two things... A) A real PASSION for dentistry,and B) great office of good people to work with.
I am your age and can say Im on the old end of the assistant spectrum . This job always attracts the younger girls. It's hard on the body and the hrs are demanding.
Dentistry is a great field for those who go in because of the dentistry.

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restorationgirl in Asheville, North Carolina

49 months ago

Alicia in Minneapolis, Minnesota said: 12 $$ an hour?? who is paying that?? that is terrible!! I make in the 25-30 range!!

Doesn't it depend on what procedures you're expected to do according to your state's licensing? I'm just finishing school, but it seems to me the job responsibilities can vary greatly from state to state. Also, from what I understand, since you can get hired off the street as a dental assistant or go to an accredited college such as AB Tech and come out with a Dental Assistant II ready for you CDA exam - doesn't that have a lot to do with pay as well? Pay does seem to vary a great deal. Alicia, how many years have you worked, did you go to college, what degree did you come out with, what procedures are you expected to know that may be the reason you are getting the pay you deserve, etc? It would be interesting to know the particulars of everyone behind the pay!

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restorationgirl in Asheville, North Carolina

49 months ago

jensen40 in Morrison, Colorado said: Hi there! Thank you so much for your posting! I an in the exact same position, just turned fourty and in this economy my BA degree gets me about as far as I can throw it! I have been searching for new career....... etc"

I'm 44:all my life worked cust. service/retail:absolute dead end and under $10/hr pay. I wanted something in health care for security, decent pay I could support myself on (still single), no crazy hrs. If saliva and blood doesn't bother you I highly encourage you to consider dental assisting. I couldn't be happier with my choice! Shadow several dental assistants in general practice as well as specialty:endodontics, orthodontics, prostodontics, oral and maxillary surgery - at least read about the options. Maybe teachers at a school in your area could get you in touch with other 'older' students (like both of us) who have graduated and are working so you can ask them if they like their choice. Compared to all of my previous jobs dental assisting to me is a dream: Work M-Th, dentist pays to have whole office travel to nice places for continuing credit hours for certification, good to very good pay, good benefits, security (the dentist is ALWAYS going to need another pair of hands and someone to help him do his job, nice atmosphere. Don't believe all the negative comments: There are good dentists out there like my last clinical rotation I just got done with for my dental assisting class at AB Tech in Asheville NC. At that particular office the dentists paid for all 6 employees to go to Hawaii for a particular seminar for continuing education credit hours - sweet! Dentists get stressed like any other 'boss' and you just deal with it: THAT'S LIFE! I think if some of the people who are negative about dental assisting had worked in retail or customer service most of their lives before that, they'd have a different opinion based on reality. I'd be happy to talk or answer more questions for you if I can.

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restorationgirl in Asheville, North Carolina

49 months ago

Nichole in Saint Louis, Missouri said: 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"

Wow. That's really cruel! Who says dentists can't cut it in medical school? I'd love to see most medical doctors try to do extremely detailed work in a confined area, two inch by three inch opening down to the very tiny mouth of a three year old, with another set of hands in the same area (us dental assistants) - it's like working in the small open neck of a bottle assembling a ship!

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Kathy in Orlando, Florida

49 months ago

Restorationgirl, are you sure u are a dental asst? U sound so familiar to me...like those dentists, that I saw in my NIGHTMARES when I used to assist them...Ha-ha-ha...for $12 per hour...lol...Doesn't it seem strange that patients all of ages loved me to "death" and wanted only my assisting...not other girls... And my "Ex" dentists just was freaking out of that...lol...My perfect X-rays, temporaries, impressions (never gagging patients ) just made dentists feel, like they can do nothing in Dentistry!...lol And, by the way, I am Computer Educated too...

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jane in Wallingford, Connecticut

49 months ago

me in az in Peoria, Arizona said: 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!

No one is discouraging anyone, we are simply exchanging true stories that happened. Maybe if the doctors showed respect, then those who shared could post more favorable posts about working as a DA. Being treated like a door mat regardless of what you do, does nothing to improve relationships not with your staff and not with the patients who are sensitive to this treatment. Hopefully for these spoiled brat doctors they will experience bad karma.

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Kathy in Orlando, Florida

49 months ago

Jane, I agree with you!

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jane in Wallingford, Connecticut

49 months ago

bree in Las Vegas, Nevada said: working as a D.A do you guys see nasty things like herpies a lot?

Not yet, just really really bad breath, gums and teeth that have never been taken care of. Sometimes the smell and the sight of no to little oral hygiene is so bad your lucky you do not loose your lunch. Hep B and C is unseen and the real danger for DA and anyone working within this field

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Kathy in Orlando, Florida

49 months ago

Yah, and also needle stick are very common issue in dentistry. If you work with Digital X-rays,it's good, 90% less radiation! But if not, even if you stay 6 feet away from source, if machines are old, there is leakage radiation, which can damage your health and your future kids as well! I read in articles, that some of "cold sterilizers", if lids of containers are not locked when are not used, if you smell them constantly, it can damage your health too. Assistants experience early miscarriages during pregnancy. Did you know about that?

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Kathy in Orlando, Florida

49 months ago

I remember, when I cleaned suctioning after surgery, even if I wore goggles, liquid got in my eye...splashing from a slippery container.I rinsed my eye, using special system (each office has to have it), however my eye was red a few days. A manager sent me to a doctor, my eye was OK so far. However I remember another case. We had a young doctor in the office. When she did a "shot" to a patient, she then threw a carpule on the tray. The carpule broke, and the rest of Anastasia along with the Pts blood got to my eye...How do u like that? She even didn't apologized and continued to work, like nothing happened. IT WAS SOOOOO RUDE !!! I complained to a manager, fill out a form. She talked to that "weird dentist". Then she apologized. And she "disappeared" from our office in a couple of months, since she had other issues in her job as well.

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daisy in Jamestown, New York

47 months ago

To be in this career, you better have rhino skin. Yes, there are some jerk Dr.s out there and yes they can be very insensitive. But there are jerks everywhere in any field you go into. If you can remember not to take it personally and chalk it up to a bad day then you will do just fine. I wish the doctors would show a lot more respect for their assistants across the board... maybe someday.

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Jen

47 months ago

I have heard a lot of people say Dentist are jerks and it is beginning to scare me :( Are they any worse then most Doctors....my Mom is a RN and my sister is a LPN and they some are bad but for the most part they are nice.

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Kathy in Cocoa, Florida

47 months ago

Yes, unfortunately. They even yell on assistants...and often for no any reasons, because they are just in bad moods. If your dentist yells on you and humiliates u in front of patients...yes it's already personal...and no any rhino skin helps. It's easy to say, but different to be in this situation. Some dentists do it even if they're in good mood. They just bully you, because they enjoy it...their power over people. They enjoy to keep u under pressure and see your suffering. They're just sick people. If u wish to tolerate it long time, u will definitely get into the mental clinic later. Psychologists already proved it...

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Margaret in Puyallup, Washington

47 months ago

So, I have been a dental assistant for many years and have worked with all kinds of people. As a dental assistant you can work with a dentist who is a jerk and is mean, but at the same time you have to stand up for yourself. I did that with a couple of dentists (they worked at the same clinic) and they actually realized that they were being jerky and it got a lot better. What I've noticed is that although being a dental assistant is demanding both physically and mentally, most dentists don't realize they are being cranky. At the office that I work at right now, if the dentist is cranky someone goes out and buys chocolate and then he realizes that he's being a jerk and fixes the problem. This way no one has to say anything and the issue is resolved. I love being a dental assistant, but I know it's not for everyone. I got into it because I was a single mom who needed to provide for my family and now I couldn't be happier. You just have to find the right fit.

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Christian Hahn in Louisville, Kentucky

47 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

Dental Assisting is one of the professions where you never get bored. Rather than do the same thing over and over, you have many options for growth such as marketing, front office management, or treatment coordinating. Each very different in its own way. The key is not only to pick the profession, but the right office. Just like any job, it can be a dead end job if you make it that way. Learn how to become a successful dental assistant and you will love your job. I write a blog for assistants that helps them learn about the profession and become successful. Check it out at www.highestpaiddentalassistant.com and make your decision after reading about it first! Good luck.

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anonymous in Fairfax, Virginia

47 months ago

Don't become a dental assistant. Go back to school. If you like health care and are a caring, compassionate person get your associates or bsn in nursing. We need to teach dental offices a lesson by demanding more respect.

I invested 2400 in my hard earned money, to be hired as a "sterilization assistant" when the truth is I take xrays, pour up models, trim models, take out the trash, clean, do chair side , you name it I've done it. I still get paid $9 dollars an hour after one year. I tried getting hired by another office but they make excuses like "you need 2 years of experience" "you need to know how to make temp crowns" and any excuse they can come up with. Most dentists don't care about their assistants. They don't value them. They don't give pay raises or train. Most offices emphasize that they don't want to train. If you aren't skinny and beautiful, you are treated like crap. If you are overweight, some offices will find other excuses not to hire you.

I'm apalled that with all the time, money sweat I have invested in the dental field, I have gotten nothing but depression, stress and heart ache. Sorry to be negative but these are the bad sides of the dental field. I'm also appalled at the lack of respect for dental assistants. Just don't do it. Don't settle for less hoping that things will get better because then another day, month and year you will loose to being unhappy.

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anonymous in Fairfax, Virginia

47 months ago

I agree that making blanket negative statements are counter productive. But I'm surpised that dentists that I have met don't have compassion or respect for their supporting staff. They and their management don't have a care or a clue as to what a dental assistant has to go through financially, personally or career wise. When I was in dental assisting school I was told that assistants made a good living. Yes it is not about the money but do you think it is fair that a dentist makes six figure salary while an assistant makes barely above the poverty line? How is that valuing your employee. I do all the work and my co-workers were asking why my hours were being cut. I waned to advance but the owner (a dentist) and the office manager did whatever they could to keep me in my place. I take out the trash, do some chair side, take x-rays, sterilize and whatever they throw at me and after 1 year at that office have my hours cut and my pay at $9. Do you think that is fair? I don't think it's fair that assistants and hygienists are being over worked while the owner sits and is a millionaire. He doesn't care about his staff. He's not preserving them. Don't you think that is the job of an employer to support and encourage the staff? Yes by law he isn't required to and in American society this behaivior is condoned. And that is why we shouldn't waste our lives putting up with it!

I respect and admire dentists but I don't see the reciprocation. There is something to respect and admire in supporting staff as well.

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Kathy in Cocoa, Florida

47 months ago

Yes, everything is true.I've heard that Nurses are treated bad too. And Doctors who begin their careers are treated bad by more experienced Doctors. I think that something wrong with that, and people have to stop to do it, because it's not the right way to do businesses and communicate with others. Those who "win" thinks that they win...but they don't...they lose too. They don't realize how beneficial would be everything if they would change their attitudes.

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Smileysuzie in redwing, Minnesota

46 months ago

Kathy in Cocoa, Florida said: Yes, everything is true.I've heard that Nurses are treated bad too. And Doctors who begin their careers are treated bad by more experienced Doctors. I think that something wrong with that, and people have to stop to do it, because it's not the right way to do businesses and communicate with others. Those who "win" thinks that they win...but they don't...they lose too. They don't realize how beneficial would be everything if they would change their attitudes.

I had one of "those days" :-( I love this field! But the doctor makes me discouraged and sucks out every ounce of enthusiasm that I have. Will I ever be happy doing dentistry? How long can I go on like this? The depressing part is that it's all personal here.I cant handle him anymore.

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annie in Carrollton, Texas

46 months ago

Dental assisting is not a good career. Most dentist are really cocky and think they know-it-all. I respect that they are doctors but that gives them no reason to think less of anyone else or treat their like crap. I have not met one good dentist except the dentist that I did my externship for. Yeah, I know there are good DDS our there, but how often does a position open in one of those offices? RARELY! When you fresh get of Dental assisting schools, its hard to find a job because 90% of most offices wants you to have 2 or more of experience. I only wanted to become a dental assistant because I wanted to become a hygienist,but after looking more into it and hearing other experiences, i changed my mind. Most of the time you wont get any type of benefits. Most doctors don't care but making money for themselves. Its their practice, and they're the boss. One thing that sucks is that when they're come an issue sometimes it sucks because the state can't do much because most offices are "private". These are things to consider, I am not saying DA is the worse out there or you should just say no but to really consider as I didn't do my research before.

Most people that I had gone to DA school doesn't even work at offices. I am seeking employment elsewhere then in the dental field. Even though you can see that people make good money. But money doesn't bring happiness all the time. I rather be content in what I am doing and Dental assisting is not it.

Dont believe what schools tell you. Most of them all they care about is Money and in having a job. Thats their job to tell you all these great things. Remember that!!

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Xo

46 months ago

JennBlankenship@comcast.net in Nashville, Tennessee said:

I went to Kaplan and did 215 hours free for my extern at a great office! The staff there is very patient and helpful as well as understanding!! My dr. is great as well. He is not only a awsome dentist but a phenomenal teacher. During my extern hours he offered to pay for my gas since he couldn't pay me a salary. He offered me a position half way through my extern and I am now a full time assistant with a good pay and a fantastic dental office and team. My Dr. is also very encouraging. He is pushing me to peruse to hygiene school and helping me through out that process. I would recommend Kaplan College to any person out there interested in becoming a dental assistant. I personally love my job. There is never a day I dred going to work. So aside from all these negative comments bringing the dental assisting profession down I believe there is some positive stories and private practices out there with great oppourtunities for people interested in becoming an assistant. But they are hard to find at times. However Kaplan gave me a good education and a awesome job. I recommend Kaplan College to anyone interested. Sacramento, CA campus.

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Xo

46 months ago

Mark Mann in Sugar Land, Texas said: It's not, these are just people who are venting their inadequacies and frustrations! If you make an effort to be a good employee, you will love your job and if you don't, keep looking for the right fit as a dental assistant and you will find it.

Very true!! It's a great profession!! You make what you want of it!! If you are negative about it, you will get negative outcomes. But I love assisting and not one thing I regret about my career!:)

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anna in Florence, Kentucky

46 months ago

i love dental assiting, i went from a server and bartender to dental assisting. I love it, the patients the atmosphere. I cant believe that so many peolpe have had bad luck with finding a office that they like. Dentists are just people with personality and attitudes. If you interview with a Doc or office manager that is rude or mean, why would you accept the job! Interview until you find a place where you can feel comfortable and happy.
Dental assisting is not a dead end job, there are always classes you can take to increase your employablity and raise your pay wage. All these comments about Dental Assisting are crazya nd Im surprised! There are good Doc and bad ones. You just have to find the right one. If this is your passion dont give up because of one bad experiance. I am a Expanded Duites Dental Assistant going to start my bachlors in microbiogoly in hope to go to UK for dentistry.I cant wait!!!

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Smileysuzie in redwing, Minnesota

46 months ago

anna in Florence, Kentucky said: i love dental assiting, i went from a server and bartender to dental assisting. I love it, the patients the atmosphere. I cant believe that so many peolpe have had bad luck with finding a office that they like. Dentists are just people with personality and attitudes. If you interview with a Doc or office manager that is rude or mean, why would you accept the job! Interview until you find a place where you can feel comfortable and happy.
Dental assisting is not a dead end job, there are always classes you can take to increase your employablity and raise your pay wage. All these comments about Dental Assisting are crazya nd Im surprised! There are good Doc and bad ones. You just have to find the right one. If this is your passion dont give up because of one bad experiance. I am a Expanded Duites Dental Assistant going to start my bachlors in microbiogoly in hope to go to UK for dentistry.I cant wait!!!

You're new. You haven't been burned yet.........a circumstance that unfortunately time will remedy.

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anna in Florence, Kentucky

46 months ago

im 6 yrs in, i have been blessed with good docs. sorry you havent

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Shari in La Place, Louisiana

46 months ago

I am a EDDA cert. Assistant in Lousisana. This May will make year 10 I have been in Dentistry. I have been in every speciality and now am a COA in Orthodontics for the past 5 years! And make 50,000 a year. I LOVE it with a passion! I am excitied EVERY single day to go to work and make beautiful smiles! My patients who are elated to get thier braces off is so rewarding and fulfilling! Almost every Dentist I have work for has been awesome! Not only were they respectble,but also paid very well and gave plenty of fringe benefits! I would def. recommend it to someone interested, but would also suggest if they're not "intimidated" by the years involved in Hygiene to presue that instead ONLY b/c of the enormous pay increase! GOOD luck futue DA's

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Nikole in New Orleans, Louisiana

43 months ago

hey there Shari, i see your in DA in laplace and was wondering if i can get your email cause i would love to talk more about dental assisting with you. Oh btw i stay close to the laplace area too. thks

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Taylair

43 months ago

Hi Shari. My name is taylair and I just emailed you. I would like to talk to you about the job and if I would enjoy the job or not. I hope to hear from you soon!

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kla in New Ulm, Minnesota

41 months ago

I am going for dental assisting. having very mixed feelings about it now after reading all of this, i probably should of just stayed away from this page :) hope I end up with a dentist who isnt a jerk - off!

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Xo in Union City, California

40 months ago

I'm a dental assistant and I enjoy what I do. Yes sometimes Dentist's are jerks but they are just like boss' in any other job. Sometimes things are not done the perfect way or to their expectations and of course they are going to be mean jerks!! But that's the way it is at any job. Over all I like my job and enjoy the diversity in the field. I would recommend it to people. But I still would agree to keep going to school, such as hygiene. The pay for DA's is not the best. And no benefits. I am pregnant and still no benefits!

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