Career Advice on How to Become a Dental Laboratory Technician

General Career Information

Dental laboratory technicians have managed to successfully cloud themselves in mystery for generations. No one is really sure what these elusive members of the dental society’s shadowy underbelly do exactly, but there are suspicious and people have developed some intriguing theories. Well, that is not really true. The truth is this is a pretty boring job.
The dental laboratory technician spends a lot of time trying to figure out a way of rephrasing their job title so that it sounds “cool enough” to help them get dates. So far there has been no real luck. Like many people, dental lab technicians continue to rely on the poor judgment of others and alcohol to make their job sound cooler at 3:30am in the morning while leaving a nightclub.
On a given day, you are likely to find the dental laboratory technician working hard on crowns, dentures and other “super cool” dental implants and prosthetics.

Career Facts:

The dental laboratory technician isn’t all party, all the time. When there is serious work to be done, such as making a crown, the dental laboratory technician jumps to work like a tranquilized three-legged sloth. They work with the dentists to make sure that the necessary dental part, whether a crown or denture or some other dental prosthetic, is properly made and fits well. 


In reality, the dental laboratory technician is responsible for doing a lot of complicated work that requires a degree of artistic skill and attention to detail. This invariably leads many dental laboratory technicians to covering themselves in tattoos. 


Career Opportunities and Job Outlook-Not Good:

The career of dental laboratory technician is not one that is growing very quickly. If you go into this field, your future job search will not be a breeze. Definitely factor that fact into your career planning. Currently, there are about 53,000 dental laboratory technicians in the United States and this number will rise to about 55,000 in 2016. This translates into a mere four percent increase, which is well below normal.
Job Outlook is Not Good    

A Day in The Life:

Most of the day of the dental laboratory technician is spent building different dental prosthetics. The job requires a good deal of dexterity and attention to detail. Often the work that is needed is very precise, especially where adjustments and bite are concerned. Thus anyone considering work as a dental laboratory technician should realize that it could require seriously detailed work that can be laborious and painstaking. It’s not as fun as it sounds.

Average Salary:

The average dental laboratory technician can expect to earn about $15.50 per hour, with the top ten percent earning around $20 an hour.

$28k - $40k


Career Training and Qualifications:

Normally a dental laboratory technician has completed an Associate’s Degree in the field.
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