Dental Laboratory TechniciansDental Laboratory Technicians construct and repair dental appliances such as crowns, bridges, dentures, and orthodontic appliances.
They use a variety of hand tools to perform tasks.
The tasks may include mixing ingredients, filling dental-appliance molds, sculpting and building forms, bending and soldering wires, and grinding and polishing finished work.
They follow instructions written by the dentist and use models and impressions of patients' teeth or mouth.
In some laboratories, Dental Laboratory Technicians are all-around workers having full responsibility for studying prescriptions, planning the work, and designing, constructing, repairing, reworking, or adjusting dental appliances.
In most laboratories, however, each Technician concentrates on one aspect of the work.
- Completion of an accredited two-year course in dental laboratory technology is preferred by many employers.
- Finger and manual dexterity.
- Arm-hand steadiness.
- Attentiveness to detail.
- Ability to visualize how something will look when complete.
- Dental Laboratory Technicians Median hourly wage: $15.72
- Average annual wage: $35,038
- Estimated number of Dental Laboratory Technicians in 2002: 5,300
- Estimated number of Dental Laboratory Technicians in 2012: 5,500
- Estimated annual job openings: 140
Possible Career Paths
Possible Career Paths for Dental Laboratory Technicians include becoming a:
- Dental Laboratory Technician Instructor
- Dental Laboratory Manager
- Opening own dental lab, a Model Maker, Metal and Plastic or a Position with supplier in product development, marketing or sales.