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Dental technician

Alternative titles for this job include Dental technologist

Dental technicians design, make and repair the dental appliances used for improving patients' appearance, speech or ability to eat.

Average salary (a year)

£25,654 Starter

to

£39,026 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

39 to 41 a week

You could work

between 8am and 6pm

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How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a dental technician

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role

University

You could do a foundation degree or degree in dental technology approved by the General Dental Council.

You're likely to need a degree qualification to do advanced dental technology work.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • at least 1 A level, or equivalent, for a foundation degree
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information

College

You can do a Level 3 Extended Diploma in Dental Technology, approved by the General Dental Council.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science

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Apprenticeship

You can get into this role through a higher apprenticeship as a dental technician.

If you want to make dental appliances and also have more direct contact with patients, you could go on to do a clinical dental technologist higher apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

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Work

You can work as a trainee dental technician with a practice and study part-time. This could take up to 5 years, depending on which qualification you do.

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Registration

Professional and industry bodies

You could join The Dental Technologists Association, for professional development and training opportunities.

Further information

You can get more details about how to become a dental technician from Health Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • knowledge of medicine and dentistry
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • knowledge of manufacturing production and processes
  • design skills and knowledge
  • the ability to analyse quality or performance
  • the ability to work well with others
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

You will:

  • design, make, modify and repair custom made dental devices
  • use hand-tools and precision equipment
  • shape materials like gold, porcelain and plastic

Dental technicians often specialise in orthodontic, crown and bridge work or prosthetics. Depending on your specialism you could:

  • create plastic or metal devices, like braces to straighten teeth
  • make items like crowns or bridges to cement in place
  • produce plastic dentures or implants

Working environment

You could work in a laboratory.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

If you want more direct contact with patients you could take further training to become a clinical dental technician. In this role you would provide dentures direct to patients with no natural teeth or provide partial dentures for patients with some teeth.

You could take further training as a healthcare scientist, specialising in reconstructive sciences, like maxillo-facial prosthetics through the NHS Scientist Training Programme (STP).

With experience you could set up your own laboratory, or work abroad.

You could become a senior or chief technician, move into quality control, sales or management. You could also go into teaching or research.

Current opportunities

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Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a dental technician right now.

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Courses In England

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Jobs In the United Kingdom

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