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How to become a certified dental assistant in Virginia, VA

Learn how to become a certified dental assistant in Virginia, VA using our guide on skills, requirements and salary in this career.?

To become a certified dental assistant in Virginia, VA, there are several steps that need to be followed. Firstly, an individual must complete a dental assisting program that is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). This program can be completed at a community college, vocational school, or technical institute. The program typically takes one year to complete and includes both classroom instruction and hands-on training.

After completing the dental assisting program, the individual must pass the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) exam. This exam consists of three parts: general chairside assisting, infection control, and radiation health and safety. Once the individual has passed the exam, they can apply for certification through the Virginia Board of Dentistry.

To apply for certification, the individual must submit an application, proof of completion of an accredited dental assisting program, proof of passing the DANB exam, and a fee. Once the application is approved, the individual will receive their certification as a dental assistant in Virginia.

It is important to note that certification is not required to work as a dental assistant in Virginia, but it can increase job opportunities and earning potential. Additionally, some employers may require certification as a condition of employment. Continuing education is also required to maintain certification, with 12 hours of continuing education required every two years.

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Key skills and competencies

As a dental assistant in Virginia, there are several key skills and competencies that are essential for success in this role. Firstly, strong communication skills are crucial, as dental assistants must be able to effectively communicate with both patients and dental professionals. Additionally, attention to detail is important, as dental assistants are responsible for preparing and sterilizing equipment, taking x-rays, and assisting with procedures. Other important skills include organization, time management, and the ability to work well in a team. To become a certified dental assistant in Virginia, individuals must complete an accredited dental assisting program and pass the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) exam.

Local salary expectations or estimates

As a certified dental assistant in Virginia, you can expect to earn a competitive salary. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for dental assistants in Virginia is $40,090. However, this can vary depending on factors such as experience, location, and employer. Some dental assistants in Virginia earn upwards of $50,000 per year. Additionally, many dental offices offer benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off. Overall, becoming a certified dental assistant in Virginia can lead to a rewarding career with a stable income and opportunities for growth.

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