What’s in your mouth? CDTs know what should and shouldn’t be…
When it comes to a dental prosthesis like a crown, bridge or implant, what you put in your mouth is important. The focus is generally on the installer of the prosthesis – the dentist. However, the builder – the dental technician – is the “behind-the-scenes” key player who creates the restorations that patients need.
Just like you want a licensed contractor to build your home, you want a dental technician – the creator of what’s going in your mouth – to adhere to professional standards. A Certified Dental Technician, or CDT, must undergo a series of evaluations and pass the following three tests within a four-year period:
- Written comprehensive: This exam tests the technician’s knowledge and broad-based comprehension of all disciplines, including anatomy, vocabulary, occlusion, material science and morphology.
- Written specialty examination: This is an in-depth written test on one of the five areas of specialty: crown and bridge, ceramics, partial dentures, complete dentures or orthodontics.
- Practical examination: This is a hands-on exam which tests the technician’s skill level and his or her ability to manufacture specific restorations in a sequence and predetermined amount of time. This examination tests the technician’s knowledge of his or her discipline and knowledge of working with appropriate materials and devices. It also assesses the technician’s understanding of developing successful processes in order to achieve consistent results.
Before aspiring CDTs can even sit for examinations, they must meet all education or equivalent training prerequisites. Once a CDT passes all tests, he or she must complete 12 hours of continuing education every year to keep skills up-to-date and to retain certification status.
Today, there are nearly 7,000 CDTs, according to JDT Unbound. To find a CDT nearest you, click here.
To find out more about how to become a CDT, click here.