Dental Assisting Chairside (DAC)
The duties of a Dental Assistant are among the most comprehensive and varied in the dental office. The Dental Assistant performs many tasks requiring both interpersonal and technical skills. This course is designed to give the student maximum “hands-on” training and experience in an actual practicing dental office. You will be taught the most up-to-date techniques using the very best technology available. The teaching is stimulating, fast-paced, and relies heavily on individual participation. The course includes:
- 14 weeks of lecture/lab which includes the Dental Radiology training. After completion of the course, you will be able to sit for the Radiology Health and Safety Exam with the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB). This is a national certification recognized in 22 states, including South Carolina.
- On Saturday, two sessions are held beginning at 8 AM and ending at 5 PM with a one hour break for lunch.
- Clinical training takes place inside a dental office when the office is closed. This gives the student hands-on experience in all areas of Dental Assisting using the treatment rooms, laboratory, x-ray facilities, and office area.
- Students can also complete a 40-hour externship in a local dental office. The externship may be completed in one week or may be spread over a two to three week period. Note: This is optional as some students begin working full-time immediately after graduation.
According to the United States Department of Labor, Dental Assistant pay is approximately $34,500 per year, and the job market is estimated to grow at a rate of 25%, which is much faster than the average.
Graduates of the PSCD Dental Assisting course can choose to eventually become Registered Dental Assistants. Rules vary in each state.
Topics covered include:
- Introduction to dental assisting, the role of the Dental Assistant, the dental team, characteristics of a professional Dental Assistant, and laws/ethics.
- Head anatomy, oral histology, tooth terminology and anatomy, SOAP, charting, classification of cavities.
- HIPAA, chart documentation, insurance terminology, dental codes.
- OSHA, HIV, infection control
- Isolation, rubber dam placement, 4-handed dentistry, amalgam, composites, tub and tray systems.
- Preventive dentistry, sealants, oral hygiene, periodontal disease, oral prophylaxis, topical fluoride.
- Study models, impression taking, pouring, trimming, bite registration.
- CPR, crown and bridge, provisional crowns
- Oral surgery, Prosthodontics, Endodontics, Orthodontics
- Radiology safety and procedure, intraoral radiology, panorex
How does this program compare to longer Dental Assisting programs?
Our program utilizes an actual dental office, allowing students to learn by doing. A hands-on approach to learning solidifies the techniques each student is required to understand, and allows students an easy transition from class to career.
Does the course instruct Expanded Functions?
Our Dental Assisting program includes mastery of a variety of expanded function dental assisting duties including rubber dam placement, Tofflemire matrix assembly and removal, temporary crown fabrication and cementation, coronal polishing, suture removal, and temporary restoration placement and removal.
Are night classes offered?
Yes! We offer an evening program that easily fits into a student’s busy working schedule. Evening classes are offered on Mondays and Wednesdays or Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Saturday programs are also available.
What is required to take the course?
Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED to be eligible to take the course.
Do you offer job placement?
Yes! Job placement assistance is available for all Palmetto School of Career Development graduates. Dentists and dental personnel recruiters contact our program when looking for qualified Dental Assistant graduates. We also continually contact local dentists to notify them of upcoming graduating classes. However, we cannot guarantee anyone a job.
What do graduates earn?
Upon graduation, graduates of the program earn a Certificate of Completion Dental Assisting as well as a Certification in Radiology, CPR, Infection Control & OSHA. Due to recent updates in South Carolina law, students will need to take the Radiology Health and Safety Exam with the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB) following the course in order to obtain their Certification in Radiology. This is a national certification recognized in 22 states, including South Carolina.
What are other programs offered by PSCD that can provide me knowledge and experience in my Dental Assisting career?
Palmetto School of Career Development also offers Dental Front Office Administration, which provides training in the 2 top leading Dental Office Softwares. This course is very important for our Dental Assisting students as it provides training on how to enter clinical notes, charting in digital records, how to take x-rays in the software and also helps to better understand how to schedule patients and understanding of dental terminology. Taking this course along with the Dental Assisting course also makes you cross trained and more marketable when going into the workforce.