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Dental Assisting

Dental Assisting Program

Be the reason someone smiles! Train hands-on to become a Dental Assistant.

10
months Prepare to pass your RDA
3
locationsLos Angeles, Ontario, and Orange County
2
DAYS A WEEKIn-class, the rest online
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Be ready to assist with dental procedures and exams while improving dental health and hygiene.

Through our dental assistant program, you can train to assist dentists in real-life dental care settings. Learn to prepare dental procedures, keep patient dental records up to date, and instruct patients on proper dental hygiene.

Choosing the right dental assistant school can be a difficult choice. At ACC, we emphasize hands-on training and real-world preparation. Although it is not required to work as a Dental Assistant in California, graduates have the choice to pursue the RDA credential. Upon successful completion of the RDA and state exams, students are awarded the Coronal Polish Certification and Pit and Fissure Certification. The program also consists of the requirements necessary for students to pursue the California Radiation Safety Certificate (limited to dental X-ray).

Do you have a dental assistant program near me? The dental assistant program is offered at our three campuses: Los Angeles, Ontario, and Orange County.

This program is taught in a blended format combining online classes and only 2 days a week of in-person instruction.

The Dental Assisting programs in Los Angeles, Orange County, and Ontario are approved by the Dental Board of California.

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Learn to:

Patient Care

Patient Care

Process X-Rays

Process X-Rays

Manage Equipment

Manage Equipment

Coronal Polishing

Coronal Polishing

Crowns/Molding

Crowns/Molding

From lectures to real-world experience, our ACC programs are designed with your career in mind.

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From lectures to labs, our ACC curriculum is designed with you in mind.
A Day in the Life of a Dental Assistant

As a dental assistant, you'll support dentists with patient procedures, sterilize and prepare instruments, manage patient records, and advise patients on proper dental hygiene.

Here are some things you may do:

  • Instruct patients on proper dental hygiene
  • Assist with and prepare for dental procedures
  • Obtain and update patient records
  • Prepare impressions and restorations
  • Administer and process X-rays 1

1 California Employment Development Department Detailed Guide, Dental Assistants in California

What Will I Be Trained to Do as a Dental Assistant?

Dental assistants perform a wide range of patient, clinical, and laboratory procedures, including x-rays, dental impressions, and coronal polishing. Students in our dental assisting program will be trained to do the following:

  • Obtain dental records Sterilize and disinfect instruments and equipment
  • Prepare patients for treatment
  • Hand instruments and materials to the dentist
  • Instruct patients on oral health care1

1California Employment Development Department OCC Guide, Dental Assistants

Am I a Good Fit for the Dental Assistant Program?

If you love working with people and are good at making them feel at ease, you might enjoy being a dental assistant.

Here are some of the top skills and attributes that make for a great dental assistant:

Active listening – Dental assistants need to be able to communicate with both patients and dentists, understanding what is being said and asking the right questions.

Instructing – Dental assistants should be able to educate patients on oral health, delivering information in a way that’s easy to understand and easy to remember.

Service orientation – A great dental assistant is one with a passion for helping patients and for providing the best care possible.

Social perceptiveness – Dental assistants should be aware and understanding of patients’ reactions in order to provide the best possible patient-centered care.

Critical thinking – A dental assistants’ ability to make sound decisions can help them provide optimal care for each individual patient.

Where Can I Work as a Dental Assistant?

Dental assistants can work in a variety of settings, including:

  • Dentists’ offices
  • Outpatient care centers
  • Physicians’ offices1

1California Employment Development Department OCC Guide, Dental Assistants

What Will I Learn in the Dental Assistant Program?

The Dental Assisting curriculum is divided into learning units called modules. Each core module stands alone and is not dependent upon previous training. Upon successful completion of the classroom and laboratory training, the ACC curriculum then provides you with hands-on experience through a 180-hour externship that will be arranged for you at an appropriate dental facility.

Class Modules for the American Career College Dental Assisting program include:

  • Fundamentals of Dental Assisting – Course material in this module examines the anatomy and physiology of the head and neck as it relates to the practice of dentistry. You will also be introduced to the roles and responsibilities of various members of the dental health team and the expected levels of professionalism in this profession.
  • Science of Dentistry – In these courses, you will be introduced to the basic concepts and principles of microbiology as it pertains to dentistry. Special emphasis will be placed on the proper methods and ramifications of infection control issues including OSHA regulations and the disease transmission process. Periodontics theory and practice will also be addressed.
  • Restorative Dentistry/Pharmacology – Coursework in this module is designed to introduce you to various materials and instrumentation. You will be exposed to the use and care of the Caries Detection Device. Pharmacology and drugs as they relate to dentistry will also be discussed.
  • Laboratory Procedures/Prosthodontics – This module is designed to analyze programs and procedures for meeting the needs of diverse populations. You will be exposed to and practice with a variety of impression materials as well as producing primary impressions. Theory and practice of permanent and removable prosthodontics will also be presented.
  • Pediatric Dentistry/Orthodontics – Theory and practice in orthodontics will be introduced in these courses. Emphasis is placed on both the preventive and restorative techniques in pediatric/operative dentistry.
  • CPR/Preventive Dentistry – In this module, you will be exposed to the principles and practices of preventing and controlling dental disease with emphasis on nutrition and plaque control. You will receive basic training in standard first aid and in recognizing and dealing with medical emergencies. Exposure to sealant materials in the field of preventive dentistry will also be discussed.
  • Endodontics/Radiography – Basic principles of dental radiology are the focus of these courses. Emphasis will be placed on operation of the x-ray equipment, safety practices, mounting and evaluation of dental films. Once you have fulfilled the necessary program requirements, you will receive a state certificate to perform x-rays in the dental office.
  • Oral Surgery/Anesthetics – These courses are designed to introduce you to surgical procedures performed in dentistry. You will also be exposed to the various methods and techniques of anesthesia.
  • Dental Assisting School Externship – Under the direct supervision of qualified personnel at your school externship site, you will have the opportunity to demonstrate and reinforce the knowledge and skills presented and practiced throughout the training program. You will be evaluated by supervisory personnel, and those evaluations will be placed in your permanent student record.

For a complete description of coursework in these modules, please refer to the ACC Catalog.

How Long Will It Take to Get My Diploma in Dental Assistant?

Students can earn their diploma to become a dental assistant in as little as 10 months.

How Much is Tuition for the Dental Assistant Program?

Our admissions advisors and financial aid advisors are here to support you. They can help you figure out the dental assistant school cost and help you explore financial aid. To learn more about ACC’s Dental Assistant program cost, access our tuition info.

Is Financial Aid Available for the Dental Assistant program?

Yes, financial aid and scholarships are available for those who qualify.

Will I Get Real-World Training?

Yes! ACC's dental assisting program includes a 180 hour externship which gives students the opportunity to demonstrate and reinforce the knowledge and skills they acquired learning hands-on throughout the training program.

Dental Assisting
Your externship in a real dental office gives you the preparation and confidence to take your RDA examinations and start your career.

Our classes are modeled after real-life situations, using the same medical equipment you'll come across in your first job. That way, you're prepared to jump in on your very first day.

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"I went from being a receptionist to working full time as a Dental Assistant, and it's all because of American Career College. My ultimate goal is to become an Orthodontist, but for now, I really enjoy what I'm doing."

- Tammy R. '10

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Want more details about the Dental Assisting Program?

By clicking above, I consent to receive calls and/or text messages** by a college representative with information for educational opportunities at the number(s) provided above. I understand calls may be initiated by an automated telephone dialing system. I need not grant this consent to receive information or to be eligible to enroll with ACC. I also understand that if I no longer wish to receive text messages from ACC, I can text back "Stop" at any time to unsubscribe from the service. (**Standard rates may apply.)

*Required

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