Posted December 7th, 2022

What Is The Avarage Dental Assistant Salary In Houston, Texas? (Plus Ways To Increase Your Pay)

If you're considering becoming a dental assistant in Houston, you're probably wondering what the average dental assistant salary in Houston, TX is. Of course you want to know what you'll get paid if you pursue a new career in dental assisting!

When it comes to determining the average dental assistant salary per hour or year, there are a few different things that will affect your dental assistant pay rate. For example, a pediatric dental assistant salary will differ from a general dental assistant salary, which will differ from an oral surgery dental assistant salary or an orthodontic dental assistant salary. Each type of dental assistant requires a specific skill set contributing to the salary awarded.

Before we get into the specific numbers, let's discuss what a dental assistant in Houston does.

What Does a Dental Assistant in Houston Do?

A dental assistant position is a critical part of any dentist's office. They help keep the office running smoothly and ensure that patients are properly cared for. As a dental assistant, you can be sure you'll work closely with patients throughout their visit. Some interactions with patients may include tasks like drying patients' mouths with suction hoses and other relevant equipment, instructing patients on proper oral hygiene, and more.

But dental assistants often perform a wide variety of tasks, including scheduling appointments, preparing patients for treatment, setting up trays for various dental procedures, cleaning teeth, and taking x-rays, to name a few. They also may assist the dentist during routine and special procedures. Additional duties may include setting up and breaking down an operating room, sterilizing and processing instruments in the sterilization room, passing instruments to the dentist, and other tasks as needed.

What Are the Ranges for a Dental Assistant Salary in Houston?

Now that you understand the typical duties of a dental assistant let's dig into the average dental assistant salary in Houston. If you're trying to guess your future dental assistant salary, it’s important to understand that there are many different factors affecting your pay rate.

While the Houston area has a mean salary of $37,430, and the mean dental assistant salary per hour in Houston is $18 (according to the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics as of May 2021)[1], there’s no guarantee that you’ll make a minimum or maximum as a dental assistant. The good news is that dental assistant pay rates in Houston come in at about 97% of the national mean, which is $38,660 per year, and $18.59 per hour.[2]

Of course, your salary or hourly pay as a dental assistant will depend on the type of dental assistant you become and where you work as a dental assistant, in addition to some other factors like your training, experience, and whether you choose to specialize. There are various types of dental assistants, and salaries for dental assistants will vary based on the type of office they work in.

The good news is that dental assistant pay rates in Houston come in at about 97% of the national mean, which is $38,660 per year, and $18.59 per hour.[2]

For example, those who specialize in certain types of dentistry, like orthodontics or oral surgery, can typically expect higher dental assistant pay rates than general dental assistants. Orthodontic assistants help orthodontists apply braces to teeth, and oral surgery assistants help dentists during surgical procedures, which require a high level of skill and experience to ensure the procedures are performed correctly. Generally speaking, a pediatric dental assistant salary in Houston will be lower than an orthodontic or oral surgery dental assistant salary, but not always.

However, average salaries for dental assistants change regularly and are highly dependent upon the demand for dental assistants in a specific area. For the most up-to-date and accurate dental assistant salary information, it's best to regularly check the latest data per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for updated information. But remember, these are the average reported salaries based on the data provided and the date indicated. Your salary may be higher or lower than these values.

How to Improve Your Salary as a Dental Assistant

Once you've gotten your feet wet as a dental assistant, it's normal to wonder how you can improve your salary as your experience increases. Here are a few potential ways to maximize your compensation as a dental assistant.

  1. Become a certified or registered dental assistant.
  2. Attending a reputable dental assistant school in Houston can significantly increase your chances of receiving a competitive dental assistant salary.

  3. Get hands-on training before seeking employment as a dental assistant.
  4. Because dental assisting is a very hands-on occupation, getting training with hands-on experience from the start is essential. This will help you stand out as a candidate to hiring managers and will help increase your pay rate as well.

  5. Find ways to take on more responsibilities in your dental office.
  6. Once you've secured a job as a dental assistant, finding ways to add more responsibilities to your daily tasks may be one way to improve your salary as a dental assistant.

  7. Specialize as an orthodontic dental assistant or an oral surgery assistant.
  8. Going on to specialize in a particular area of dentistry will increase your value as a dental assistant and enable you to request a higher salary.

  9. Continue your dental assistant education and/or become a dentist.
  10. Educating yourself in various dentistry aspects will increase your knowledge and value to dental offices. And, if you are highly ambitious, you may choose to continue your education and become a dentist, which would also significantly increase your salary.

Dental Assistant School Graduate

Why Attending the Right Dental Assistant School in Houston Matters

If you choose to invest in career training to be a dental assistant in Houston, TX, it's crucial to find a reputable school to attend. With the proper education, training, and support from a trusted dental assistant school, you can build and grow a successful dental assistant career and expand your opportunities over time.

One way to decide if a dental assistant school is right for you is by attending live and virtual events held by schools in Houston to evaluate their program before attending. Many dental assistant schools offer open houses and other events to help you get acquainted with the school culture and its people.

For example, at Houston Dental Assistant School, we focus on teaching students exactly what they need to do to prepare for a successful career in dental assisting. Our instructors are dental assistants, allowing them to offer real-world experience in their teaching. We’re truly dedicated to the success of our students, and we have designed our dental assistant program to help our students find their place in the dental field.

The Outlook for Dental Assistants in Houston is Positive

There's no shortage of dental offices in the Houston, Texas, area, which is excellent news for an aspiring dental assistant! Dental assisting in Houston might be the right fit for you if you want to find your place in a recession-proof career that offers a stable financial future.

Learn more about Houston Dental Assistant School, including program structure, tuition and payment options, and how to apply at


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Lisa Leslie

Lead Copywriter
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Lead Copywriter
| Click to open Lisa Leslie's LinkedIn Profile

Lisa Leslie, a professional copywriter based in New Hampshire, is the Content Manager and Lead Copywriter at Zollege, the parent company of a network of over 120 medical assistant and dental assistant schools ...

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