Posted in Career Insights

People who want to work in a dental office often wonder, how long does it take to become a dental assistant?

Luckily, it’s possible for you to become a dental assistant in a shorter amount of time. It can take anywhere from a few months to two years to become a dental assistant. For some jobs, you need only a GED or high school diploma.

Working as a dental assistant is a fun and rewarding job. Dental assistants help ensure that a dental office is running smoothly. They assist the dentist by getting check-up rooms ready, scheduling appointments, sterilizing equipment, and ensuring patients are comfortable. 

In this article, we’ll review the different factors that can affect how long it may take to become a dental assistant.

On-the-Job Training

One way to become a dental assistant is to simply get a job at a dental office. You will typically need a high school diploma or GED to qualify for the job. Once you get a position, you will learn everything you need to know through on-the-job training. Your supervisors and the dentists will teach you the skills you need to succeed in the dental field and at their office.


Beyond just getting a job, you can become a dental assistant by enrolling in a dental assistant program. 

Most dental assistant programs that you can find at vocational schools or community colleges take anywhere from nine months to two years. The time it takes to become a dental assistant depends on whether you get a certification or an associate degree.

While enrolled in a dental assistant training program, you will learn both in the classroom and in a clinical setting. Having these skills ensures that you are ready for this career. 


The licensing varies depending on where you live. In some areas, there are very few requirements to become a dental assistant. In other areas, it takes extensive education and training to pursue this career. Make sure you look up the requirements where you live. That way, you will know how many years to become a dental assistant in your area.

Interested in a Career as a Dental Assistant?

Take a look at Stratford Career Institute’s course to help you decide if this career may be worth it for you.

The class will teach you everything you should to know about the profession, including: 

  • Introduction to the dental assistant profession,
  • A brief history of medicine,
  • Medical law and medical ethics,
  • Job search and employment opportunities,
  • Basic dental science,
  • Psychology, communication, and multicultural interaction,
  • Oral health and preventative techniques,
  • General anatomy and physiology,
  • Clinical dental procedures,
  • Management of hazardous materials,
  • Dental office and chairside assistance,
  • Instrument transfer and maintaining the operating field,
  • Dental radiography and specialties, and
  • Restorative dentistry and office management.

Enroll in our course today!


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Become a Dental Assistant

Become a Dental Assistant

Stratford Career Institute offers a convenient and affordable online course to teach you the ins and outs of a dental assistant career!