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Dental Assistant Schools in Iowa

Dental Assistant Programs in Iowa

As access to health care has increased, so too has national access to dental care. Preventive dental care can improve quality of life, strengthen public health outcomes, and minimize the risk of periodontal disease later in life. If you decide to become a dental assistant, you can help Iowa residents improve and maintain their oral health.

Learn more about dental assistant education by contacting the schools listed below.

Dental Assistant Schools in Iowa

There are several ways you can become a dental assistant. Iowa programs may allow you to start your career with a certificate or diploma, a route that generally only takes six months to one year.

This option may allow you to earn an Associate’s degree in the future if you want to advance your education. You may also enroll in an Associate’s program from the very start.

At an Iowa college of dentistry, you may complete your Associate’s degree in two years. The courses listed below are common across all types of dental assistant programs, since they cover some of the most important dental assisting skills in the industry.

Iowa Dental School Course Options

  • Dental Theory
  • Dental Materials
  • Dental Assisting Principles
  • Radiography
  • Dental Specialties
  • Procedures for the Dental Office
  • Dental Assisting Clinical Experience

Dental assistant schools in Iowa do require a fair amount of clinical experience. If you attend a school with an on-site dental clinic, it’s likely that you can gain experience that way.

Schools that do not have this option may assign you to local clinics, where you can work alongside licensed dentists, dental hygienists, and dental assistants. Many required assisting courses incorporate some type of hands-on experience, letting you build your skills slowly throughout your education.

Even if you attend dental assisting classes online, you must put your skills to work by completing clinical rotations at a local site.

While attending an Iowa dental school, you may qualify for scholarships and grants that minimize your educational expenses. The American Dental Association awards scholarships to dental assisting students each year.

Working as a Dental Assistant in Iowa

By the time you graduate, you should be able to easily answer the question, “What do dental assistants do?” The work you do can change from day to day, depending on how busy the dentist’s schedule is and which types of appointments are scheduled.

For example, you may check patients in at the front desk, set up tools and instruments for the dentist, perform basic cleanings, and take x-rays. You may also talk to patients to get their dental history and prepare them for these services they will be receiving.

To work as a dental assistant, you must be licensed by the Iowa Dental Board. This involves passing a dental assisting exam after completing an approved program.

Between 2014 and 2024, job openings for dental assistants may increase 12% in Iowa (O*Net, 2016). The average dental assistant salary in Iowa is $37,820 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016).

Start preparing for an exciting new career in dentistry today.

Use the list of schools below to contact dental assisting programs near you.