Dentist assistant salary is the major attraction for those who wish to enter in this dynamic career. However, if you are very serious to become a dentist assistant, you must also have thorough knowledge regarding your duties and responsibilities. As an assistant of a dentist, you must undertake various tasks.
Dental Assistant Responsibilities
A dentist assistant must be a multi-skilled person and she/he must be able to assist a dentist in all phases of dentistry. You must do some routine tasks, such as:
- Seating patients in treatment area,
- Take impressions of teeth,
- Sterilize and prepare instruments,
- Pass instruments to the dentist as per requirements,
- Expose and develop X-rays,
- Polish clinical crowns,
- Greet patients,
- Serve as receptionist to office manager,
- Order supplies,
- Provide assistance to office tasks,
- Provide oral hygiene instructions,
- Perform laboratory functions,
- Manage patient’s records,
- Manage business aspects of dentistry, etc.
How Much Does a Dentist Assistant Make?
As per the available data from BLS.gov (2008), the lowest annual income of a dentist assistant is around $22,680. The average and highest annual salaries of dentist assistants are $34,410 and $47,090 respectively. However, you can earn a very good salary if you are a certified dental assistant.
Certified Dentist Hygienist Salary
Generally, the salary of a certified dentist assistant is based on hours of work. The registered dentist assistant salary is different in different states of United States. If you are working in New York, you can make around $17.00 per hour. Charlotte is paying second highest salary to the dentist assistant. In this city, you can earn around $16.42 per hour. Dentist assistant salary in Las Vegas is around $15.49. If you are working in cities such as Atlanta, Chicago, or in Tulsa, your salary will be around $14.93, $14.59, and $13.74 per hour respectively. This is just a rough estimate. The salary of a dentist assistant may further influenced by various other factors, such as experience, education, formal training, location, etc.
Salary on the Basis of Experience
Experience is an important determining factor of the salary of a dentist assistant. You will not get a high salary in the beginning of your career. When you gain experience, your salary will also increase gradually. The salary of a dentist assistant is directly proportional to her/his experience. So, you can expect around $11 per hour in the beginning stage of your career. When you earn experience, you can expect around $20 or even more per hour.
Salary On the Basis of Location
Location is the other major determining factor of the dentist assistant salary. Cost of living is high in some cities in the US so the salary will also be very high. You will get highest salaries in cities like New York, California, Texas, Florida, Illinois, etc. However the salary will be low in cities like Pennsylvania due to low cost of living.
Salary on the basis of cities
* New York : $17.00 per hour
* Las Vegas : $15.49
* Atlanta : $14.93
* Chicago : $14.59
* Tulsa : $13.74
Salary on the basis of States
* Minneapolis : $20.51
* Napa CA : $20.57
* San Francisco : $20.98
* Anchorage, AK : $21.00
* Barnstable Town : $21.43
* Santa Rosa CA : $21.49
* Manchester, NH : $22.51 per hour
Education is highly important for getting higher salaries for dentist assistants. You can earn more if you are a certified dentist assistant from an accredited dental school. Some employers consider your school qualification as well while considering your salary.
Dental Assistant Certification
The salary of a certified dentist assistant is higher than those who do not have certification. You can obtain a certification by appearing the examination conducted by the Dental Assisting National Board. In order to be eligible for attending this examination, you must have a degree from an accredited dental school.
Other benefits of Dentist Assistants
Besides a high payment, you can also expect a number of comprehensive benefits along with your career. Though the benefits vary from organizations, it typically includes:
* Free dental care
* Paid holidays
* Paid vacation
* Paid sick leave
* Uniform allowance
* Heal insurance
* Pension plan
* Reimbursement for continuing education, etc.
Dental Assistant Career Prospects
As per the analysis of US Bureau of Labor Statistics, dentist assistants have a better future because of the rapid growth of this profession. There will be more job opportunities and the demand for dentist assistants will also be higher in future. The rate of oral problems among Americans is also very high so the physicians need more assistants for helping their duties. Even in the midst of global financial crisis, people didn’t go back from their dental healthcare. However, besides dentist assistant salary and career prospects, you must also be aware of your responsibilities before entering in this field.