How to Become a Dental Assistant in Washington

How to Become a Dental Assistant in Washington

So you want to know how to become a dental assistant in Washington, but the process is wholly dependent on what position you would like.  There is the registered dental assistant, expanded function dental auxiliary, dental anesthesia assistant, and the nationally recognized certified dental assistant. There are also a radiography requirements to complete if you want to operate dental x-ray equipment and perform radiography procedures. With that said, here is how to become a dental assistant in Washington with dental assistant salary information as well.

Dental Assistant Salary in Washington

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Registered Dental Assistant (RDA)

how to become a dental assistant in washingtonAll dental assistant in the state of Washington must be registered. As a registered dental assistant, you are able to perform all the supportive procedures that listed under Washington’s dental regulations, which you can view here. To qualify for registration, you must:

1. Send a completed application form to the Washington State Dental Quality Assurance Commission (DQAC), AND

2. Pay applicable fees, AND

3. Send proof of completion of a 7 hour course in AIDS education and training, AND

4. Provide other necessary information determined by the DQAC

**Dental assistant registration must be renewed annually and all registered dental assistants must maintain current Basic Life Support certification**

Expanded Functions

For sealant/fluoride varnish for children in school based programs, you must:

1. Have at least 200 hours of employed experience by a Washington licensed dentist, with theoretical and clinical training in the application of dental sealants and fluoride varnish treatments, and verified by the licensed dentist who provided training, AND

2a. Complete a CODA accredited dental assisting program, OR

2b. Continue education courses, OR

2c. Individual training by a Washington licensed dentist, AND

3. Apply to the Washington State Dental Quality Assurance Commission for endorsement

For monitoring of sedation and general anesthesia, you must:

1. Complete a 14 hour course on instruction and practical experience in the use of equipment

Expanded Function Dental Auxiliary (EFDA)

An expanded function dental auxiliary allows you to perform additional functions, such as coronal polishing, fluoride treatment, sealant application, and radiography procedures. More info from DQAC here. To become an EFDA, you must:

1a. Complete a CODA accredited dental assisting program, OR

1b. Have current DANB CDA certification, AND

2. Complete an DQAC approved EFDA course, AND

3. Pass the Washington State Restorative Exam (WARE), AND

4. Pass the clinical exam administered by the Western Regional Examining Board, AND

5. Send proof of completion of a 7 hour course in AIDS education and training, AND

6. Provide other necessary information determined by the DQAC, AND

7. Apply to the DQAC for an EFDA license

**All EFDAs must maintain current Basic Life Support certification**

Dental Anesthesia Assistant

A dental anesthesia assistant is able to perform intravenous medication, sedation, general anesthesia procedures. In order to qualify as a dental anesthesia assistant, you must:

1. Complete and send an application form to the DQAC (forms provided by DQAC), AND

2. Pay applicable fees, AND

3a. Complete the Dental Anesthesia Assistant National Certification Examination (DAANCE) provided by AAOMS, OR

3b. Complete the Oral and Maxilloficial Surgery Assistants Course from the CALAOMS, OR

3c.  Complete equivalent education and training approved by DQAC, AND

4a. Complete training in intravenous access or phlebotomy that includes 8 hours of didactic training and clinical experience, with at least 10 successful intravenous starts, OR

4b. Proof of equivalent education and training approved by DQAC, AND

5.  Maintain certification in basic life support, advanced cardiac life support, or pediatric advanced life support, AND

6. A valid general anesthesia permit from the oral and maxillofacial surgeon or dental anesthesiologist where you will be working, AND

7. Proof of completion of a 7 hour course in AIDS education and training, AND

8. Provide other necessary information determined by the DQAC

How to Become a Certified Dental Assistant in Washington

You also have the option to become a certified dental assistant (CDA), which allows you to earn more as well as receive additional benefits. The process isn’t too difficult and requires you to:

1. Complete a CODA accredited dental assisting program OR have at least 2 years/3,500 hours of experience as a dental assistant, AND

2. Obtain CPR certification from a DANB accepted provider, AND

3. Apply for and pass the DANB CDA exam

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Radiography Requirements

If you wish to operate dental x-ray equipment and perform radiography procedures, you must have the necessary training in safe operating procedures and show competence in the following areas.

(1) Familiarization with equipment
(a) Identification of controls
(b) Function of each control
(c) The use of a technique chart

(2) Radiation protection
(a) Collimation
(b) Filtration
(c) Gonad shielding and other patient protection devices
(d) Restriction of x-ray tube radiation to the image receptor
(e) Personnel protection
(f) Grids

(3) Film processing
(a) Film speed as relates to patient exposure
(b) Film processing parameters
(c) Quality assurance and quality control

Dental Assisting Schools in Washington

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