How to Become a Dental Assistant in New York

dental assistant looking at x ray

If you want a job in the healthcare field and live in New York, then getting trained to be a dental assistant may be a good career path for you.

Those in the role of dental assistant can enjoy a rewarding job that involves helping and interacting with others on a daily basis.

Education & Training

New York dental assistants must finish specific, state-mandated training and achieve a certain level of education before being allowed to work.

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Course Benefits

In the courses above, students learn how to pass the National Entry Level Dental Assistant (NELDA) or Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exams by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).

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How Long Does It Take?

6 to 12 months.  The nice thing about online programs is that you can go as fast or as slow as your schedule dictates.

How Much Does it Cost?

Expect to spend around $2,000 (but you can finance it).

What Do You Study?

With any dental assistant program, expect to take the following courses:

  • Working in a dental office
  • Dental terms
  • Patient diseases and how they are treated
  • Using software to manage patient visits
  • Health records management and usage
  • Accounting for the office
  • Insurance claim form processing
  • Common industry codes

Many of these programs will feature classroom and laboratory work where students learn about the teeth, gums, and jaws. Students also learn about the different types of instruments in a dentist’s office and how to use them.

More Local Programs

    Lincoln Tech

    • Whitestone, Brooklyn

    St. Paul’s School of Nursing
    Diploma program where students learn to operate the diagnostic equipment such as ultrasonic and x-ray units. Designed for entry level positions.

    • Queens

New York State Requirements

To become a dental assistant in the state of New York, applicants must be at least 18 years of age and have a high school diploma or equivalent.

Individuals must also successfully complete an approved one-year course in dental assisting from a degree-granting institution, completing at least 200 hours of clinical experience or the equivalent of approved courses from a non-degree granting institution.

Types of Dental Assistants in New York

Registered Dental Assistant

There are two types of dental assistants in the state of New York. First, there is a “Registered Dental Assistant.” This is someone who has completed a dental assisting program or an alternative course of study acceptable to the New York State Education Department.

Limited Permit Dental Assistant

A “Dental Assistant with a Limited Permit” is an individual who has completed an approved dental assisting program but has yet to pass the required state exams.

A person with a limited permit may perform all tasks designated to a registered dental assistant under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist. The permit expires after one year and can be renewed one time.

Dental Assistant Salaries in NY

Below are some average salaries and hourly wages for areas of the state.

Area Hourly Annual
Albany-Schenectady-Troy $22.70 $47,220.00
Binghamton $19.31 $40,150.00
Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls $21.36 $44,430.00
Capital/Northern NY $21.35 $44,400.00
Central East NY $21.08 $43,850.00
Elmira $21.09 $43,870.00
Glens Falls $21.26 $44,220.00
Ithaca $21.15 $43,980.00
Kingston $21.94 $45,630.00
New York-Newark-Jersey City $23.48 $48,830.00
Rochester $23.38 $48,620.00
Southwest NY $20.98 $43,630.00
Syracuse $21.07 $43,820.00
Utica-Rome $20.61 $42,870.00
Watertown-Fort Drum $19.48 $40,510.00

Occupation: Dental Assistants(SOC Code319091)

Job Description

What Do They Do?

Dental assistants typically have a variety of responsibilities that they need to complete throughout the day. These workers can help with patient care, assist with scheduling appointments, and keep patient records.

Additional Duties

Other tasks that a dental assistant in New York may have are:

  • Ensure patient comfort
  • Prepare work area for treatment and procedure
  • Sterilize instruments
  • Assist dentist during procedure with the handling of instruments
  • Dry patient’s mouth using specialized equipment
  • Instruct patients on correct oral hygiene practices
  • Process x-rays
  • Assist patients with billing and payments

No Radiography Requirement Needed

Unlike some other states, New York does not have a radiography requirement, meaning that any dental assistant in New York may legally operate any and all radiography equipment in the dentist’s office.

Career Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the career outlook for dental assistant jobs in New York is strong. Experts predict that the need for dental assistants will increase by around eight percent across the nation from 2021-2031. Factors for this rise in jobs will include professionals leaving the field and workers entering retirement.

Search Dental Assistant Programs

Get information on Dental Assistant programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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Dental Assistant vs Dental Hygienist