Diploma Program | 8-months | Day & Night Classes | Palm Harbor & Orlando
Dental Assistants are important members of the dental health care professional team and primarily help to increase the efficiency and productivity of the dental practice by assisting the dentist in delivering patient care. The Dental Assistant functions as a chairside assistant working directly with the Dentist, performing radiology techniques and expanded functions, rubber dam placement, and numerous laboratory procedures.
The objective of our Dental Assistant program is to train students to acquire satisfactory skills and demonstrate competence in a variety of dental office procedures and laboratory techniques. CFI's Dental Assistant program focuses on teaching students the traditional duties, responsibilities, and a variety of dental procedures and techniques including:
- Exposing and developing dental radiographs
- Preliminary examination procedure
- Assisting chairside using four-handed and six-handed dentistry
- Organizing and preparing treatment rooms
- Mixing dental materials
- Charting and patient record keeping
- Sterilizing instruments
- Comforting patients during dental procedures
- Educating patients on various dental procedures
Under the direct supervision of a dentist, the qualified assistant may perform expanded functions such as intraoral procedures in restorative dentistry and oral surgery. The assistant qualified in radiology may also take and expose radiographs.
Dental Assistant students are required to complete *41 credit hours (approximately 33 Weeks-Day; 44 Weeks-Evening - 980 Clock Hours). Graduates of the Dental Assistant program receive a diploma and CPR certification from the American Heart Association.Full-time students can complete the program in as few as 8-months.
*The listing of credits is not meant to imply that credits can be transferred into college or other private career school programs. Transfer credits are at the sole discretion of the receiving school.
Central Florida Institute is accredited through Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). ABHES has been nationally recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a private, non-profit, independent accrediting agency since 1968. It has been at the forefront of advancing the quality of health education programs throughout the country.
The Department of Labor lists the annual mean wages of Dental Assistants in 2010 were $33,470.
Employment is expected to grow 36 percent from 2008 to 2018! In fact, dental assistants are expected to be among the fastest growing occupations over the 2008–18 projection period. Check our employment map data. The Dental Assistant with expanded functions and radiology may be employed in any of the following dental practices:
- General practice
- Dental clinic
- Cosmetic dentistry
- Pediatric dentistry
- County health departments
- Oral & Maxillofacial dentistry
CFI accepts applicants based upon an aptitude for their chosen field, work experience, educational background, and by a personal interview. For more information, chat live with us, call us at 1-888-831-8303, or schedule a tour today.
"I am loving my job as an assistant. I thank my teachers from CFI greatly. I feel I left CFI confident and excited to get out on my own! I am doing well in my field and look forward to heading to dental school to someday become a dentist myself. CFI helped me get my foot into a career that has many possibilities. Thank you!" -Rhonda R. Lead Dental Assistant Dental Assistant, DA graduate
"A dentist recommended me to CFI, well-knowing the importance and value of how a DA program would help me achieve my goals of becoming an EFDA (Expanded Functions Dental Assistant) professional and Instructor."-Kathy G. Dental Assistant graduate
Graduates are prepared to perform the expanded functions as permitted by Florida law which include:
- Taking preliminary impressions
- Fabricating whitening trays
- Preparing, placing, and removing dental dams
- Placing topical anesthesia, fluoride and desensitizing agents
- Coronal polishing
- Fabricating and cementing temporary crowns and bridges
- Removing cement
- Placing temporary restorations
- Placing and removing matrix retainers
- Placing sealants, bases, liners, vamishes and bonding agents
The Dental Assistant program at Central Florida Institute will prepare you for a career in the health care industry by providing you with the essential skills you need and employers demand.Dayna Lester, Student
I've learned how to place a dental dam. That was fun. I've learned all the teeth numbers, all of the conditions, not all of the conditions, but a lot of the conditions that you can have in the mouth. A lot of the fixes. I've learned surfaces of teeth, cavity preparation, fillings, different filling materials, polishing, a lot.Ellie Perez, Instructor
Some of things that we teach here are pouring impressions, taking impressions, pouring them up. We also make periodontal dressings, which is this pink here. It's like a bandage on the tissues. We also trim models, and we make things like night guards, mouth guards, bleaching trays out of the models that we trim.
When considering a career in health care, becoming a medical assistant or stenographer are often first choices. However, working in the dental field has its own distinct advantages and career opportunities.Aurora Graves, Instructor
The idea of being on call and having a schedule that wasn't the same week to week was just a no deal for me. Being in a dental office where you work, maybe on the low end, 35 hours a week and that's considered full-time in some dental practices, you're not on call, and your schedule is the same every time. So you know when you're working and you know when you're off. As a dental assistant, there are a whole bunch of careers that you can branch into. Being a dental products representative is one of them. Being an office manager of an entire dental office is another. Going into distribution, working for one of the actual materials distributors for things like our disposable products, stuff like that. There are lots of different ways that you can take a dental career.
Students often tell us that the hands-on experience combined with one-on- one personal attention from instructors made choosing Central Florida Institute the right choice.Dayna Lester, Student
The environment is really nice. It's very small, so you get to know everyone really well. The administrative staff is really awesome as well. They're really friendly, really make you feel at home. Our teachers are awesome. They're really fun. They make it a lot of fun, and they're teaching you at the same time.July Torres, Student
I think they touch on basically everything that you need to learn about being a dental assistant, from just seating and assisting and greeting patients to the actual hands-on work. They really do prepare you 100%. So I do feel ready.
Teachers tell us, for them, seeing their students succeed in their careers in the dental field is the ultimate reward.Ellie Perez, Instructor
I get students all the time stopping by and telling me, "Ms. Perez, it's so great out there. Thank you. Thank you." Always thanking us, coming back constantly and sending me emails and just letting me know how well they're doing out there, which I'm really proud of all of them.Aurora Graves, Instructor
Students take our reputation with them wherever they go. When we actually send them out to do their externships, we follow up. We check in on them, and we talk with the doctors, the staff, and the office managers. Time and time again we hear that our students hit the ground running. They're ready on day one, not day 21, and that they generally impress the doctors with their technical skills as well as their professional skills.
So if you are considering a career as a medical assistant or a stenographer, don't forget to take a look at the rewarding field of dental assisting.Ellie Perez, Instructor
I have been in the dental field for over 27 years. The reason I like it is because dental is very different every day. Dental assisting is not the same. Every day you walk in and it's something new. Whether today you're going to take impressions, temporary crowns, x-rays, tomorrow it might be something else. General dentistry is different. It's just all the specialties wrapped up in one, and we learn that here at CFI.