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Dental technician

Alternative titles for this job include Dental technologist

Dental technicians make and repair dental appliances used to improve patients' appearance, speech or ability to eat.

Average salary (a year)

£28,000 Starter


£43,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

39 to 41 a week

You could work

between 8am and 6pm

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Dental technician

You can get into this job through:

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


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

It's likely you'll need a degree 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


You could 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

More Information


You could do the Dental Technician Level  5 Higher Apprenticeship.

If you want to make dental appliances and have direct contact with patients, you could do the Clinical Dental Technician Level 5 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

More Information


You could start 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.

More Information


Professional and industry bodies

You can join the Dental Technologists Association (DTA) for professional development and training opportunities.

Further information

You can find out more 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

As a dental technician, you could:

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

You might specialise in orthodontic, crown and bridge work or prosthetics. Depending on your speciality 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

With experience you could:

  • train to become a clinical dental technician if you want more direct contact with patients
  • do further training to become a healthcare scientist through the NHS Scientist Training Programme (STP) and specialise in reconstructive sciences
  • set up your own laboratory or work abroad
  • become a senior or chief dental technician
  • move into quality control, sales, management, teaching or research

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Dental Nurse Apprenticeship

  • Wage: £13,312 a year Annually
  • Location: Birmingham

Courses In England

Dental Technology Foundation Degree

  • Start date: 16 September 2024
  • Location: Birmingham

Dental Technology - Level 3 Diploma

  • Provider: Capital City College Group
  • Start date: 02 September 2024
  • Location: London

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