DANB’s Salary Survey

DANB certification improves dental assistants’ careers and
benefits the dental practices in which they work.

Read on to learn more.

Dental Assistant Salaries

Dental assistants who are not DANB certified earn $17.76 per hour.


Dental assistants who hold DANB’s Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) certification earn $20.46 per hour.


The map illustrates CDA certificant hourly wages by state.


CDA Certificant Salaries

Certification Delivers Value

Dental assistants are integral to the dental office. DANB certificants contribute to office productivity and efficiency – contributing to the bottom line.

Top 5 duties CDA certificants perform:

  1. Infection control  (81%)
  2. Lab functions  (70%)
  3. Order dental supplies (63%)
  4. Expanded functions  (58%)
  5. In-office training  (41%)


“Being a Certified Dental Assistant certificant builds our knowledge and skills so that we can bring value to the dental practice.” 

— Mandy P., CDA

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“I have maintained DANB certification for 26 years and it has always been a benefit to me.”  

— Lauren J., CDA

The Certification Difference

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Educated and Experienced

Dental assistants who hold DANB’s CDA certification demonstrate a commitment to the profession and show a passion for lifelong learning.

“That extra knowledge I have gained from having my CDA certification has helped me learn how to better do my job.” — Edwin T., CDA

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Career Satisfaction

There are many benefits to holding DANB certification, including personal pride, increased knowledge, and greater earning power. These are some of the reasons DANB certificants report high career satisfaction.

“Dental assisting has provided me with a variety of great experiences, from seeing the smile on a patient’s face to mentoring new dental assistants to become the best they can be.” — Douglas R., CDA

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Earning Power

Certified Dental Assistant certificants not only earn over $2 more per hour than dental assistants who are not certified, they also more frequently ask for and receive raises. It could be because their employers realize the value that CDA certificants bring.

“I’m very proud that in five years I have more than doubled my salary. I have grown from a $10 an hour temporary assistant to the lead assistant making over $20 an hour.” — Whitney W., CDA

  Ready to get started?

Visit DANB’s website to learn more about DANB exams and certification.