The state average for dental assistants working in Idaho in May 2009 was a mean $29,020 per year or $13.95 hourly as listed in the Occupational Employment Statistics. Boise dental assistants proved to be in a more profitable position, averaging $31,160 per year or $14.98 an hour in 2009, 7.4 percent more than the Idaho state average salary.
So, that's the average; of course, figure lower for just starting out. I'm not in your state, but you should be able to estimate.
Read more: Dental Assistant Salaries in Boise | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/info_7979613_dental-assistant-salaries-boise.html#ixzz1qGrWKiKy
Blood: Yes, there will be times when there's a lot of blood, but you're going to suck it right up, either with the high speed suction, or the saliva ejector will get it. Don't forget, most of it will be watered down. It's not a big deal, because it's usually a controlled type of situation - I can deal with quite a bit of blood at work, but I'm sure I'd pass out if I saw an accident.
Worst part of the job: Sometimes dentists can be...ahem...."difficult"? They have a pretty stressful job, and some of them take it out on the assistant. What you have to do though, is quietly speak to him behind closed doors, and explain you're not his servant, wife, or dog. This usually straightens the problem out. If not....hand in your 2 weeks notice.
Extractions are not bad, surgery is not bad...what I disliked was endo....just sitting and handing the files over, the barbed broaches...there's nothing to see in endo. It's not really boring, just... tedious, if you get the difference.
Dentists hard to work with: LOL, see above. One dentist threw a box of gutta percha points at me, off the RCT tray, after screaming in frustration, "The God-damned f***ing canal is calcified! Get me the G-D f****ing RC Prep!!" The patients eyes were like 2 terrified dinner plates peering out over the rubber dam. I told the dentist to stick the gutta percha points where the sun don't shine, picked up my stuff from the closet, and walked out! By the time I got home, the tape on my answering machine was FILLED up with messages, begging me to come back. ( I got a better job the very next day).
Other things: Well, all in all, it's a very interesting career. I left assisting to go on to hygiene, and I'm glad I did, but I learned so much as an assistant! Plus, you meet so many people, too, the work is interesting, and you're never bored.
I find the whole world of dentistry fascinating, and if I had to do it over, I'd probably try for dental school.
You're really gonna like it.
Any more questions, just ask!