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Dental Laboratory Technician

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What You Need to Know About Dental Laboratory Technician

Position Description Construct and repair full or partial dentures or dental appliances.

Life As a Dental Laboratory Technician

  • Build and shape wax teeth, using small hand instruments and information from observations or dentists' specifications.
  • Read prescriptions or specifications and examine models or impressions to determine the design of dental products to be constructed.
  • Rebuild or replace linings, wire sections, or missing teeth to repair dentures.
  • Place tooth models on apparatus that mimics bite and movement of patient’s jaw to evaluate functionality of model.
  • Load newly constructed teeth into porcelain furnaces to bake the porcelain onto the metal framework.
  • Fabricate, alter, or repair dental devices, such as dentures, crowns, bridges, inlays, or appliances for straightening teeth.

Dental Laboratory Technician Skills

These are the skills Dental Laboratory Technicians say are the most useful in their careers:

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Quality Control Analysis: Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Time Management: Managing one’s own time and the time of others.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Active Learning: Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

  • Model and Dye Person
  • Dental Instrument Maker
  • Dental Technician (Dental Tech)
  • Ceramist
  • Denture Waxer

Dental Laboratory Technician Job Outlook

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 38,100 jobs in the United States for Dental Laboratory Technician. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 14.4% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 5,500 new jobs for Dental Laboratory Technician by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 5,000 job openings in this field each year.

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The states with the most job growth for Dental Laboratory Technician are Utah, Michigan, and Arizona. Watch out if you plan on working in Kansas, Missouri, or Maine. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

What is the Average Salary of a Dental Laboratory Technician

Dental Laboratory Technicians make between $25,320 and $64,180 a year.

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Dental Laboratory Technicians who work in Alaska, Virginia, or Colorado, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Dental Laboratory Technicians in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $36,540
Alaska $57,940
Arizona $45,240
Arkansas $39,260
California $43,340
Colorado $47,210
Connecticut $49,880
Florida $41,110
Georgia $43,420
Hawaii $39,850
Idaho $45,920
Illinois $41,800
Indiana $38,990
Iowa $42,740
Kansas $48,000
Kentucky $44,720
Louisiana $37,920
Maine $42,910
Maryland $39,180
Massachusetts $45,650
Michigan $41,310
Minnesota $44,670
Mississippi $46,430
Missouri $40,850
Montana $51,200
Nebraska $48,640
Nevada $42,080
New Hampshire $41,320
New Jersey $42,610
New Mexico $38,390
New York $50,250
North Carolina $43,190
North Dakota $39,540
Ohio $43,400
Oklahoma $42,900
Oregon $40,080
Pennsylvania $40,210
Rhode Island $44,570
South Carolina $45,560
South Dakota $32,790
Tennessee $41,660
Texas $41,840
Utah $47,780
Virginia $52,220
Washington $43,710
West Virginia $39,530
Wisconsin $39,960

Tools & Technologies Used by Dental Laboratory Technicians

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Dental Laboratory Technicians:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Email software
  • Word processing software
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Intuit QuickBooks
  • Scheduling software
  • Graphics software
  • Computer aided design and drafting CADD software
  • Inventory management software
  • Bookkeeping software
  • Database management software
  • CAD/CAM
  • Computer imaging software

Becoming a Dental Laboratory Technician

Individuals working as a Dental Laboratory Technician have obtained the following education levels:

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Where Dental Laboratory Technicians Are Employed

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Below are examples of industries where Dental Laboratory Technicians work:

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Similar Careers

Those interested in being a Dental Laboratory Technician may also be interested in:

Are you already one of the many Dental Laboratory Technician in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:

References:

Image Credit: Sgt. Dallas Edwards via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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