If you’ve begun researching a career in dentistry, then you may have come across two similar job titles: dental assistant and expanded functions dental assistant. Are there similarities? What are the differences? The dental assistant program in Columbus can answer those questions and more. Continue reading to learn about these two important roles in a dentist’s office.
What Does a Dental Assistant Do?
Mostly, dental assistants help dentists and prepare patients for treatment. Their duties include:
- Scheduling appointments for patients
- Managing patient records
- Sterilize equipment
- Process billing and payment
- Pass equipment to the dentist during treatment
- Teach patients about proper oral hygiene
- Process X-rays and lab samples
What Does an Expanded Functions Dental Assistant Do?
A dental assistant may want to become an expanded functions dental assistant, or EFDA. An EFDA can perform the same tasks as a dental assistant in addition to some advanced duties. These vary by state and often from one dental practice to another.
Specific certification as an EFDA can be attained. For example, you can become a certified preventive functions dental assistant, a certified preventive orthodontic assistant, or a certified restorative functions dental assistant.
Depending on the certification received, duties could include performing coronal polish, applying dental sealants, administering anesthesia, applying fluoride treatments and performing certain orthodontic work.
Does It Pay to Become a EFDA?
As in most career fields, having additional training will result in increased pay. According to the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB), dental assistants that are certified tend to earn more money than non-certified dental assistants. That’s why many return for additional coursework in dental assistant training in Westerville, so they can earn a higher salary as an expanded functions dental assistant.
What’s the Job Outlook?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not distinguish between dental assistants and EFDAs. However, the report on employment for dental assistants is expected to increase some 18 percent over the next decade. Therefore, you can expect the job prospects for an EFDA with additional training to be as good if not better.
Would you like to learn more about a career as a dental assistant or an expanded functions dental assistant? There’s a program in Columbus and Westerville that would be glad to answer any of your questions. Call and find out if a career in dentistry is right for you.
About Dental Assistant Pro
Would you like to enter the rewarding field of dental assisting? Dental Assistant Pro offers a program of 10 Saturday classes that includes lectures and hands-on training. We operate in a state-of-the-art training facility. Contact us in Lebanon or Westerville for more information.