Top 10 Associate Dentist Certifications

This article outlines the top certifications for associate dentists, including requirements and benefits of each.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 16 min read

Certifications are an important part of the job market for associate dentists. Having a certification can help demonstrate to potential employers that the dentist is qualified and knowledgeable in their field. Certifications show that the dentist has completed additional courses, passed rigorous exams, and gained experience in certain areas of dentistry. This can give employers confidence in the dentist’s abilities and may give them an edge over other applicants for jobs. Additionally, certifications can open up opportunities for further education or specialization that could lead to more advanced positions.

The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the top certifications for Associate Dentists and explain how they can contribute to advancing an associate dentist's career.

What are Associate Dentist Certifications?

Associate dentist certification is a professional credential awarded by the American Dental Association (ADA) that recognizes dentists who have achieved a high level of expertise in providing patient care. This certification attests to an individual’s knowledge and skills in areas such as general dentistry, restorative dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, periodontics, endodontics, prosthodontics and oral surgery.

The Associate Dentist Certification provides dental professionals with a distinct advantage when applying for jobs or advancing their career. It demonstrates that they have met rigorous educational and clinical requirements set forth by the ADA, and it shows employers that they are knowledgeable and experienced in all aspects of dental care.

The credential also serves as an important benchmark for quality patient care. By earning this certification, associates can demonstrate to patients that they are well-trained professionals who provide safe and effective treatments. Furthermore, it ensures that patients receive the highest level of dental care regardless of which associate dentist they see.

In addition to boosting job prospects and providing reassurance to patients about the quality of treatment they will receive, Associate Dentist Certification also helps associates stay up-to-date on the latest advances in dental technology and techniques. The continuing education courses required for certification keep them informed on best practices while providing them with additional opportunities to hone their skills in specific areas of practice.

Pro Tip: Associate dentist certification is a great way to build your resume and demonstrate your commitment to the profession. Take the time to research the various certification options available and make sure you meet all of the requirements before applying. This will help ensure that you are well-prepared for the exam and will give you a greater chance of success.

Related: What does an Associate Dentist do?

Top 10 Associate Dentist Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Associate Dentists today.

1. American Dental Association (ADA) Certified Dentist

The American Dental Association (ADA) Certified Dentist is a professional designation that recognizes dentists who have achieved the highest standards of quality care. This certification is awarded to dentists who have met the rigorous requirements set by the ADA, including completing continuing education courses and passing an examination.

To become ADA Certified, dentists must first complete a minimum of two years of post-doctoral training in an accredited dental program. After completing this training, they must then pass both written and clinical examinations administered by the National Board of Dental Examiners. Once these exams are passed, they must then submit to a background check and obtain licensure from their state’s licensing board before being eligible for ADA Certification.

The process of becoming an ADA Certified Dentist can take up to two years or more depending on the individual's experience and educational background. The cost for obtaining ADA Certification varies depending on the individual's state and may include fees for application processing, exam fees, and other costs associated with obtaining licensure in their state.

2. National Board Dental Examination (NBDE) Part I and II

The National Board Dental Examination (NBDE) is a two-part exam administered by the Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations (JCNDE). The NBDE Part I and Part II are designed to assess the knowledge, skills, and abilities of dentists in order to ensure that they are competent to practice dentistry safely and effectively.

NBDE Part I is a computer-based test that consists of 400 multiple-choice questions. It covers topics such as anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, microbiology, pathology, dental materials, pharmacology, and other basic sciences. The exam takes approximately 8 hours to complete.

NBDE Part II is also a computer-based test that consists of 500 multiple-choice questions. It covers topics such as clinical sciences including oral diagnosis, radiology, periodontics, endodontics, operative dentistry, prosthodontics, orthodontics and pediatric dentistry. The exam takes approximately 8 hours to complete.

In order to take the NBDE exams you must first register with the JCNDE through their website or by mail. You will need to provide proof of your dental education and licensure information in order for your application to be approved. Once your application has been approved you will receive an authorization letter from the JCNDE which will contain instructions on how to schedule your exam date and time at an authorized testing center near you.

The cost for taking both parts of the NBDE is $1125 USD ($575 for Part I and $550 for Part II).

3. Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) Certification

Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification is a credential that demonstrates an individual’s knowledge and skills in providing advanced cardiac life support. ACLS is a two-day course that includes lectures, hands-on practice, and exams to assess the student's ability to recognize and initiate appropriate treatment of life-threatening cardiac emergencies. The course is designed for healthcare providers who may be called upon to respond to a cardiac emergency such as a heart attack or stroke.

The American Heart Association (AHA) offers the official ACLS certification course. The class typically takes two days to complete, though some courses may take longer depending on the provider. During the class, students will learn about advanced cardiovascular life support topics such as airway management, pharmacology, electrical therapies, resuscitation techniques, and post-cardiac arrest care. The course also covers team dynamics and communication during an emergency response situation.

To obtain ACLS certification, individuals must first complete an AHA approved Basic Life Support (BLS) course or equivalent training program. After completing the BLS course, individuals can register for an ACLS certification course at an AHA Training Center or online through an AHA approved provider. Once registered for the class, students must attend all lectures and practice sessions in order to receive their certification card at the end of the course.

The cost of ACLS certification varies depending on where you take the class and if you are taking it online or in person. Generally speaking, courses range from $200-$500 USD per person depending on location and other factors.

4. Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) Certification

Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) Certification is a certification program designed to prepare healthcare professionals to respond to emergency situations involving children. The program focuses on the recognition and treatment of cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, shock, and other life-threatening medical emergencies in infants and children.

The PALS certification course typically takes 8 hours to complete, depending on the provider. It is offered by both online and classroom providers. To get certified, participants must attend a PALS course, pass an exam at the end of the course, and demonstrate competency in skills such as airway management and defibrillation.

The cost of a PALS certification course varies depending on the provider; however, most courses cost between $100-$300 USD.

5. Basic Life Support (BLS) Certification

Basic Life Support (BLS) Certification is a certification that provides individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to perform CPR and other life-saving techniques in an emergency situation. It is designed for healthcare professionals, such as doctors, nurses, paramedics, and other medical personnel.

The BLS certification typically takes about 4 hours to complete. During the course, participants learn how to recognize cardiac arrest, provide chest compressions and rescue breaths, use an automated external defibrillator (AED), provide relief of choking, and recognize stroke signs and symptoms.

To receive BLS certification, you must attend a class taught by an accredited instructor. The American Heart Association offers BLS classes at various locations throughout the country. You can also find online courses that offer BLS certification.

The cost of a BLS course varies depending on the provider but typically ranges from $50 - $100 USD per person.

6. American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID) MaxiCourse Certificate

The American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID) MaxiCourse Certificate is an advanced dental training program that focuses on the placement and restoration of dental implants. The program consists of a series of courses that cover topics such as implant anatomy, prosthodontics, surgical techniques, and patient management. The program is designed to help dentists develop the skills necessary to provide quality implant care for their patients.

The AAID MaxiCourse Certificate Program takes approximately three years to complete. It consists of two phases: Phase I is a comprehensive didactic course that covers all aspects of implant dentistry; Phase II is a hands-on clinical experience in which participants learn how to place and restore implants in actual patients.

To obtain the AAID MaxiCourse Certificate, applicants must have completed both phases of the program, along with passing a written examination. Applicants must also be members in good standing with the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID).

The cost of the AAID MaxiCourse Certificate Program varies depending on the institution offering it. Generally speaking, however, it can range from $15,000 to $20,000 USD.

7. Invisalign Certification

Invisalign Certification is a program that allows dentists and orthodontists to become certified in providing Invisalign treatment. The certification process includes an online course, hands-on training, and clinical experience. It typically takes between 6-12 months to complete the entire certification process.

To become certified, dentists and orthodontists must first complete an online course on Invisalign treatment. This course covers topics such as patient selection criteria, proper use of Invisalign aligners, and how to read digital scans. After completing the online course, they must attend a hands-on training session with an experienced instructor. During this session, they will learn how to properly fit patients with their aligners and how to adjust them for optimal results. Finally, they must complete a minimum number of clinical cases before they can be certified in providing Invisalign treatment.

The cost of becoming certified in Invisalign treatment varies depending on the provider but typically ranges from $2,000-$5,000 USD. This cost typically includes the cost of the online course, hands-on training session, and any additional materials needed for certification (such as digital scanners).

8. Laser Dentistry Certification

Laser Dentistry Certification is a certification program offered by the Academy of Laser Dentistry (ALD). It is designed to provide dentists with the knowledge and skills necessary to safely and effectively use lasers in their practice. The certification program consists of a comprehensive online course, an in-person clinical practicum, and a written examination.

The online course covers topics such as laser safety, laser physics, tissue interaction, and laser applications. The in-person clinical practicum provides hands-on training in the use of lasers for various dental procedures. The written exam tests the participant’s knowledge of laser dentistry principles and techniques.

To get certified, participants must complete all three parts of the program within one year. Upon successful completion of all three components, participants receive their Laser Dentistry Certification from the ALD.

The cost of the certification program varies depending on whether or not you are an ALD member. For non-members, the cost is $1,500 USD; for members it is $1,200 USD.

9. Oral Sedation Certification

Oral Sedation Certification is a type of certification that allows dental professionals to administer oral sedatives to patients in order to reduce anxiety and pain during dental procedures. Oral sedation is a safe and effective way to reduce patient anxiety and make the dental experience more comfortable for both the patient and the dentist.

In order to receive certification, dentists must complete an approved course in oral sedation that covers topics such as pharmacology, clinical skills, patient monitoring, and emergency management. The courses typically take between 8-16 hours depending on the program. After completing the course, dentists must pass an exam administered by either their state board or a third-party organization.

The cost of obtaining Oral Sedation Certification varies depending on the program chosen. Generally speaking, it can range from $500-$3,000 or more. Additionally, there may be additional costs associated with taking the exam and renewing certification every few years.

10. Orthodontic Mini-Residency Certificate

Orthodontic Mini-Residency Certificate is a certification awarded by the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) to orthodontists who have completed a minimum of 100 hours of advanced education in the specialty of orthodontics. This certificate is designed to enhance the knowledge and skills of orthodontists in order to provide better care for their patients.

The Orthodontic Mini-Residency Certificate program typically takes one year to complete, although some programs may take longer depending on the individual's schedule and availability. The program consists of a series of lectures, seminars, hands-on labs, and clinical experiences that are designed to improve an orthodontist’s knowledge and skill level. The program also includes an examination that must be passed in order to receive the certificate.

In order to obtain this certificate, you must be a licensed orthodontist in good standing with the AAO, as well as fulfill all other requirements set forth by your state licensing board. You will also need to complete an application form for the program, submit official transcripts from your dental school or postgraduate training program, provide proof of malpractice insurance coverage, and pay any applicable fees associated with the program.

The cost for obtaining an Orthodontic Mini-Residency Certificate varies depending on where you attend the program and what type of courses you take. On average, however, it can cost anywhere between $5,000-$10,000 USD for tuition fees alone.

Do You Really Need a Associate Dentist Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on your individual needs and circumstances. If you are considering becoming a dentist, then the answer is likely yes. An Associate Dentist Certificate is an important credential that can help demonstrate your qualifications and knowledge in the field of dentistry. It will also provide you with the necessary education and training to become a successful dentist.

In most cases, it is required for any dental professional to obtain an Associate Dentist Certificate before being able to practice dentistry in their state. This certificate provides proof that you have received a degree from an accredited dental school and have successfully completed all of the necessary clinical hours needed for licensure. Additionally, it can also be used as part of your resume when applying for jobs or promotions within the dental field.

An Associate Dentist Certificate is a great way to show potential employers that you are qualified and knowledgeable about dental care. Having this credential can also help you stand out among other applicants when seeking employment in the dental field. It can also serve as evidence of your commitment to continuing education in order to stay current with changes in the industry and ensure quality patient care.

Overall, whether or not you need an Associate Dentist Certificate depends largely on your personal goals and circumstances; however, if you are serious about pursuing a career in dentistry, then obtaining this certification would be beneficial.

Related: Associate Dentist Resume Examples

FAQs About Associate Dentist Certifications

1. What is an Associate Dentist Certification?

Answer: An Associate Dentist Certification is a professional qualification that demonstrates the attainment of a certain level of knowledge and skill in general dentistry. It is awarded by the American Dental Association (ADA) upon completion of an accredited program, which requires passing a certification exam.

2. How do I become an Associate Dentist?

Answer: To become an Associate Dentist, you must complete an accredited dental education program and pass the ADA’s certification exam. You must also be licensed to practice dentistry in the state where you wish to work.

3. How long does it take to get my Associate Dentist Certification?

Answer: The amount of time it takes to receive your certification will depend on the type of program you choose and how quickly you can complete all requirements. Generally, it can take up to two years or more to receive your certification.

4. What are the benefits of becoming an Associate Dentist?

Answer: Becoming an Associate Dentist offers many benefits, including increased job security, higher earning potential, and greater career advancement opportunities. Additionally, being certified gives you access to specialized resources and continuing education programs that can help you stay up-to-date on best practices in dentistry.

5. Is there any way I can renew my Associate Dentist Certification?

Answer: Yes, in order to maintain your certification status as an Associate Dentist, you must participate in continuing education courses every two years. Additionally, you may need to re-take the ADA’s certification exam every 5-7 years depending on your state's regulations.