homepage | Become a Dental Assistant 

September 22, 2023

Become a Dental Assistant 

by Pete Dulin

MedCerts dental assistant training program available through UMKC TalentLink

Dental assistants serve an important role as a key member of a dental team, ensuring that patients receive excellent dental care. Assistants keep busy in a dental office as they interact with patients, provide support for dentists, and perform important duties. The job requires skills such as multitasking, attention to detail, and communication with patients and the dental team.  
Dental assistants can earn a range of $40,000-50,000 annually in the Greater Kansas City area, depending on experience. Earning certification through UMKC TalentLink’s healthcare partner MedCerts is a first step on the pathway to work in the dental field.

Let’s learn more about what it takes to be a dental assistant. 

Active – Dental assistants work on their feet, moving around the dental office, assisting patients, and aiding the dentist during procedures.  

Multitask – The job involves performing several tasks in a smooth professional manner and managing multiple roles. A dental assistant’s typical day includes preparing the treatment room, performing an initial patient examination and cleaning, and assisting the dentist during procedures. Being organization and able to prioritize tasks with efficiency is important.  

Communication – Sharing key details is a fundamental yet vital aspect of a dental assistant’s role. You’ll need to communicate effectively with patients to explain procedures and answer questions they may have. Demonstrating empathy, active listening, and being patient will help put patients at ease and help allay fears and concerns.  

Assistance – You’ll put your training to work by assisting the dental practitioner during a procedure. Focus, communication, and anticipating a dentist’s needs will facilitate a professional experience. Being familiar with the instruments and equipment used during dental procedures is essential.  

Preparation – Before each procedure, dental assistants prepare and sterilize instruments and equipment. Cleaning and disinfecting instruments are basic but important tasks. Dental assistants also ensure the equipment is in good working condition and ready to use, keeping patients and the workplace safe. 

Post-Procedure Cleaning – After each procedure, dental assistants follow up by cleaning and disinfecting the treatment room, disposing of medical waste properly, and readying the space for the next patient.  

Watch The MedCerts Dental Assistant Program Sneak Peek 

How To Become a Dental Assistant Through UMKC TalentLink and MedCerts

Prior healthcare field isn’t a requirement to work as a dental assistant, but it can be helpful. Working in other jobs can build other skills you need, such as customer service to assist people in a helpful manner or working in a position that requires multitasking.  

If you’re interested in medicine or health, but don’t want to personally treat patients or perform tasks like changing diapers or inserting catheters, then working as a dental assistant is another option. You’ll interact with patients and dental professionals in a rewarding role. You’ll also perform some administrative tasks that involve your organizational skills to balance out the medical side of the job.  

To prepare for a dental assistant role, you can learn through MedCerts’ online dental assistant certification training. The program provides expert-led video-based training that you can access from home and complete within a flexible schedule.  
Completing training and earning certification can lead to other more specialized pathways in the dental field, including pediatrics, endodontics and periodontics. Gaining experience as a dental assistant is also an important stepping stone for those who wish to become a dentist or hygienist. 

The 14-week program includes course and study materials, dedicated student success advisors, and access to MedCerts’ career center and career coaches for a year after certification completion. You’ll gain the knowledge and skills needed for the Registered Dental Assistant (RDA) credentialing exam. 

MedCerts’ education consultants can discuss flexible payment plans for the tuition.

How Do I Get Started?

Request more information from UMKC TalentLink’s healthcare training partner MedCerts about the Dental Assistant program. A MedCerts representative will contact you to share program information and answer your questions.  

During the 14-week Dental Assistant online program, students learn essential knowledge that can help them earn certification and secure a job with an employer.