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Dental Technician Apprenticeship Leads to Science Foundation Degree

dental technician

Doing a dental technician apprenticeship could get you a Foundation Degree in Science and Dental Technology and give you the chance to work in the world of dentistry.

Where fine art and science meet is where you will find the dental technician. It’s a fantastically interesting job and one which you can access through the new Level 5 Dental Technician apprenticeship.

What does a dental technician do?

Dental technician is a lab-based role and the job of a dental technician is to design, make and repair custom dental appliances. Dental appliances are things like temporary and permanent crowns, dentures, bridges and braces.  Basically, your dentist will take X-rays and take an impression of your teeth and the dental technician will then make the appliance to fit each individual client.

How long does it take to become a dental technician?

It takes three years to become a dental technician if you do an apprenticeship. Over the course of those three years, you’d learn about oral anatomy  and how the design of dental appliances can help prevent oral disease. You would also learn about the procedures used in the design and manufacture of devices, such as CAD (computer aided design) and CAM (computer aided manufacturing).

What kind of work does a dental technician do?

Dental technicians work in collaboration with dentists. A dental technician will advise a dentist on choosing the right dental appliance based on the information they have about each patient. The dental technician will then make the dental appliance for the dentist to fit. Dental technicians are qualified professionals and you would be expected to have the relevant qualifications and to comply with the associated medical standards.

What qualifications could I get on a dental technician’s apprenticeship?

The dental technician apprenticeship involves you studying towards a Level 5 Foundation Degree in Science in Dental Technology.  Once you have completed your apprenticeship you can apply to register with the General Dental Council as a dental technician.

What’s a dental technician’s earning potential?

The starting salary for a dental technician is around £21,500 rising to an average salary of £31,000.  Progression to the position of dental laboratory manager offers the opportunity to earn anywhere between £39,000 and £67,000, so some great earning potential if you are great at what you do and learn the skills required to lead a team effectively.

Job opportunities for dental technicians?

Job prospects are good and official labour market information predicts that job opportunities for dental technicians are set to rise between now and 2022 (possibly because people eat more sugar-rich food and drink and don’t look after their teeth very well).

Either way, if you think that making peoples’ smiles beautiful is a job that you would enjoy and be good at, it’s well worth checking out this apprenticeship.

Top Tips

Finish your Level 3 study first (A-levels or a vocational course) and make sure that you’ve got some solid background knowledge of maths and science under your belt.

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