Employed at dental offices of nearly all kinds, dental assistants in Delaware perform under the supervision of the dentist to assure that routine dental procedures and administrative tasks are taken care of. Even though it can be possible for those who have graduated from high school to learn about this job by means of on-the-job training, almost all organizations choose to hire candidates who have finished a 12-month dental assistant certification training course.

This job is a good one for those who are starting their careers in the medical field, because of the increasing need for their skills in Delaware. In fact, according to the newest data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there should be a 19% rise in dental assisting positions through the next decade.

What do dental assistants do in Delaware?

The primary responsibilities of the dental assistant in Delaware center around the things that help the office take care of its customers and provide basic dental care. Although some managers may require further responsibilities, the checklist at this link shows primary function of the majority of dental assistants.

The steps to becoming a dental assistant in Delaware

The four steps to become a dental assistant in Delaware are listed below.

Step 1 – Graduate from high school or earn your G.E.D.

Receiving your high school diploma is a critical fundamental to becoming employed in any professional job. Working in the healthcare field is no different. And even in cases where it is possible to find a position without your high school diploma, the jobs normally do not offer much in compensation or chances for advancement.

On top of that, many dental assistant programs call for applicants to be high school graduates or G.E.D. holders in their admissions requirements. Put in the time to complete this first step, and you’ll eliminate a large number of barriers during your career.

Step 2: Choose a program accredited by CODA and register for training

The next step in becoming eligible to work as a certified dental assistant is to sign-up for training courses that are recognized by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). This organization coordinates program curricula and standards to ensure consistent quality in nationwide dental assistant schools.

Why CODA accreditation matters

Accreditation by the CODA is viewed as essential because only graduates from a program approved by this organization may take one of the national certification exams.

About online dental assistant programs

So as to better support students who are employed or have other obligations that can make attending class a challenge, many schools offer pharmacy tech classes online. These courses are also perfect for individuals who don’t live close to a school that has dental assisting education.

Be conscious, however, that online classes still require pupils to complete their hands-on training hours at a physical site affiliated with the school.

Step 3: Satisfy all necessary internship hours and graduate from the program

Completing the accredited program you selected in the preceding step is your next objective. The classroom and hands-on segments of the typical course can often be finished in twelve months or less.

A lot of training programs devote the academic segment of their syllabus to the material that is covered in the national certification assessments. Offering students hands-on practice in a real dental office, conversely, is the emphasis of the internship part of a program.

Step 4: Pass one of the national certification examinations

There are two highly-popular dental assistant certification examinations – the NELDA and CDA. Becoming eligible to challenge these tests calls for you to first graduate from a CODA-accredited training program. Pupils who pass either exam earn the nationally-accepted title of Certified Dental Assistant (CDA).

Both of these examinations are explained in greater depth below.

National Entry Level Dental Assistant (NELDA)

One of the primary national examinations is the National Entry Level Dental Assistant Exam (NELDA), which is a three-part examination recognized all over the nation. The NELDA includes three component exams (the RHS, ICE and AMP) given in a one-hour, 50-minute timed structure. Candidates who successfully pass the assessment earn the distinction National Entry Level Dental Assistant (NELDA).

Eligibility to take the exam requires the individual being able to meet either of the next two prerequisites:

    • Finished a CODA-accredited dental assistant program, or
    • Acquired comparable work experience as a dental assistant

CDA Exam

The second popular national certification examination is the CDA, and is sponsored by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB). There are 60 multiple-choice problems on this one-hour, 45-minute timed examination.

You must be able to meet one of the following conditions before you can take the assessment:

    • Finished a CODE-approved dental assistant training program, or
    • Obtained comparable work experience as a dental assistant

How much does a dental assistant make in Delaware?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for a dental assistant in the U.S. was $37,630 as of May 2017.

The following data table reflects how much this range varies based on the area you choose to work in.

LocationPay TypeLowMedianHigh
United StatesHourly$12.24$17.76$25.00
Wilmington, DE-MD-NJ Metropolitan DivisionHourly$11.20$18.38$23.94
Salisbury, MD-DEHourly$13.30$18.15$30.55
Dover, DE MSAHourly$11.16$16.87$22.23