How to Become a Dental Assistant in Reno, Nevada
With just a short training program you could be ready to begin your career as a dental assistant in Reno. This is the largest city in the state outside of the Las Vegas area, and like that more famous city has a vibrant nightlife and several casinos. Reno is also a great place to live for outdoor recreation. You can ski in the winter and enjoy hiking and watersports at Lake Tahoe in the summer.
Dental assistants are always needed, especially in metropolitan areas like Reno. As a dental assistant you would be working in a dental office directly helping patients. Some of the typical duties in this career are taking X-rays, assisting during dental procedures, and helping patients make appointments and get settled. Find out the state requirements for becoming a Nevada dental assistant here.
Dental Assisting Programs in Reno
A good place to start your career as a dental assistant is with a post-secondary academic program. Most of these take a year or less to complete and prepare you to work in a dental office with both classroom and hands-on, clinical learning.
- Truckee Meadows Community College, Reno. Right in the city is the area’s only dental assisting program that is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation. You can choose to complete an associate’s degree program or to earn a certificate, which takes just 10 months. Students benefit from a full-scale clinic for hands-on work and will be prepared to pass the national exam for certification.
- Milan Institute, Sparks. Sparks is like Reno’s twin, a city right next door that is nearly as large. From the Sparks campus of Milan you will have access to everything both cities have to offer. Milan’s program will prepare you to land your first job in a dental office.
- National School of Dental Assisting, Reno. Another option in Reno is the eight-week program at the National School of Dental Assisting. You’ll learn in a complete, working dental office and learn skills hands-on. You will also get trained and certified in using X-rays and in CPR.
Salaries and Career Outlook
Nevada is seeing incredible growth in dental assistant positions. They are increasing at a rate of over 16 percent, which is much higher than average job growth.
In Reno and Sparks, the average dental assistant earns $19.64 per hour or $40,860 per year. The highest earners in the field make over $54,000 per year.
Working as a Dental Assistant in Reno
As you begin your search for a first job in dental assisting in Reno, you won’t have to go far. Dental assistants work in dental offices, and there are plenty of those in and around the city. Whether you want to work and live in the heart of it all, or you would rather be in the suburbs or further out, there are plenty of jobs available for qualified dental assistants.