In the United States, an orthodontist assistant salary is around $32,177. The mean stands at C$40,895 ($32,380 USD) in Canada, £26,238 ($36,649 USD) in the United Kingdom, and AU$47,000 ($36,867 USD) in Australia. Orthodontist assistants in New Zealand can anticipate salaries to average NZD$53,377 ($38,925 USD) in New Zealand. See how experience and work environment affect the compensation of those who help the professionals.
How Much Does an Orthodontist Assistant Make?
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Orthodontist Assistant Salary Determinant Factors
For orthodontist assistants, determinants of pay consist of experience, work setting and seniority. Where orthodontists have a solo or group practice, they will generally set the pay of their assistants. Factors can include location of practice, the number of orthodontists and clients and the preferences of the practitioners. In public sector or government agencies providing orthodontic services, salaries may prove more standard.
1. How Much Does an Orthodontist Assistant Make by Country?
Orthodontist Assistant Salary in US
The mean pay for orthodontist assistants in the United States stands at $32,177. Those at the lower end of the salary spectrum make $19,544, while top earners average 48,343.
Orthodontist Assistant Salary in Canada
According to PayScale, orthodontist assistants in Canada have a mean salary of C$40,895. Earnings have a range starting at C$37,283 and stopping at C$64,671.
Orthodontist Assistant Salary in UK
In the United Kingdom, orthodontist assistants fall within the category of “Dental Nurses.” According to the National Careers Service, dental nurses in the country earn between £17,000 and £28,500. SalaryExpert places the mean salary for orthodontist assistants in the United Kingdom at £26,238.
Orthodontist Assistant Salary in Australia
PayScale data reveals a national mean of AU$47,000 for orthodontist assistants in Australia. Total compensation for these professionals falls between AU$33,617 and AU$60,401, inclusive.
Orthodontist Assistant Salary in New Zealand
As reported by SalaryExpert, orthodontist assistants in New Zealand earn NZD$53,377 on average. These professionals make between NZD$39,836 and NZD$64,727. According to the New Zealand Government, hourly wages for dental assistants, which include orthodontic auxiliaries, span from NZD$16 to NZD$26.
2. How Much Does an Orthodontist Assistant Make According to Experience?
Entry-level orthodontist assistants in the United States learn $31,000 on a mean basis. Those who have worked between five and 10 years make $38,000. At ten to 20 years of experience, salaries increase to $40,000. Assistants with more than 20 years of experience fetch on average $42,000.
With less than five years of experience, mean pay for an orthodontist assistant in Canada stands at C$47,000. The figure rises to C$55,000 at the five to ten-year stage. Assistants with ten to 20 years on the job make on average C$53,000. Mean pay climbs to C$60,000 for those beyond 20 years of experience.
The National Health Service starts dental nurses at “Band 3”, which translates to entry-level salaries between £16,698 and £19,852. At “Band 5,” or the dental nurse specialist level, pay ranges from £22,128 to £28,746.These ranges closely follow the pay for dental nurses overall in the United Kingdom, including those in private practices.
In Australia, orthodontist assistants with five to ten years of experience fetch 14 percent above the national mean. Salaries for those with up to five years of work earn eight percent under the national average.
The New Zealand Government states that new dental assistants, including orthodontic auxiliaries, earn between NZD$16 and NZD$19 per hour. Those who work two to three years are paid up to NZD$22 per hour, while five or more years of experience equates to a potential wage of NZD$26 per hour. Based on SalaryExpert, orthodontist assistants in New Zealand can expect pay at NZD$39,836 at entry-level and NZD$64,727 after achieving eight years in the profession.
3. How Much Does an Orthodontist Assistant Make According to Work Environment?
Where private orthodontist practices abound, pay can vary widely based on factors such as location, size and profitability of the practice. With more orthodontists generating revenue, group practices may offer higher pay than solo practitioners.
Orthodontist assistants in the United States overwhelmingly work in private practices. A “white paper” from the American Association of Orthodontists reveals that, out of 10,785 licensed orthodontists in the United States in 2015, 72 percent were solo-practitioners. Nearly 17 percent operated out of group practices with two to five orthodontists. That leaves 11 percent of orthodontists in practices with five or more orthodontists.
In the United Kingdom, dental nurses, who may perform functions of an orthodontist assistant, work in both the National Health Service and with private practitioners. Pay is set by the agency, based primarily on the experience and seniority. The National Careers Service says salaries in both settings are similar.
The orthodontist assistant field has full and part-time workers, though most fall in the former category. Job Bank Canada states that around one out of four dental assistants, who include orthodontic assistants, are part-time. Full-time dental assistants in Australia log about 36 hours per week.
According to O*NET’s survey, 78 percent of orthodontist assistants and other dental assistants in the United States worked less than 40 hours per week.
In the United Kingdom, orthodontist assistants and other dental nurses can work in hospitals through their dental departments, as well as in dental offices. Those in hospital dental departments may have overnight or weekend on-call duties to treat emergency patients. For dental nurses in office settings, work schedules generally follow the standard 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. hours and weekdays.
Bonuses and Benefits
Pay Scale reports that bonuses range from $204 to $2,923 for orthodontist assistants in the United States. Earnings from profit sharing run from $509 to $3,025, with commissions averaging $500. In Canada, the mean bonus stands at C$512. According to SalaryExpert, bonuses run at NZD$870 for orthodontist assistants in New Zealand on a mean basis. The average bonus is £428 for assistants in the United Kingdom.
Approximately 34 percent of orthodontist assistants in the United States reported to PayScale having medical benefits. Dental coverage goes to 21 percent, while 13 percent of orthodontist assistants enjoy vision coverage. In Canada, nearly 49 percent have employer-provided medical coverage and 45 percent have dental benefits. One in five receives vision care.
Statistics on the demand and outlook for orthodontists and dental assistants serve as a barometer on the outlook for employment of orthodontist assistants. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects an increase of 1,300 orthodontists, or 19 percent, in the United States by 2026. This means an increase from 6,600 in 2016 to 7,800 or 7,900 by 2026.
According to the New Zealand Government, dental assistants, including orthodontic auxiliaries or assistants, stand “good” chances at employment as turnover in the field is high.
For dental assistants in Canada, including orthodontist assistants, Job Bank Canada suggests strong competition among dental assistants for jobs. By 2024, the dental assistant occupation should have 12,300 positions available for 13,900 seekers. Retirements in Canada will account for 7,500 openings, highest among the sources for openings. Approximately 3,000 job openings will arise from expansion of the profession by 2024.
In Australia, seekers for orthodontist assistant jobs may need to rely on turnover and retirements. According to Job Outlook Australia, the number of dental assistants in Australia should not change appreciably by 2022 from the figure of 21,900 reported in 2017. The predicted 10,000 openings in the profession by 2022 should result from job searches
Orthodontist assistants can advance to positions as dental or orthodontist office managers, treatment coordinators, dental hygienists and practice managers.
Orthodontist assistants work for professionals whose services will experience significant demand, especially by patients seeking to alleviate the aesthetic effects of misaligned teeth and similar oral conditions. With a relatively small field of orthodontists, those who would assist them face substantial contests to land the jobs. Opportunities will likely arise when current orthodontist assistants retire or move into new jobs. Salary prospects should grow with experience and with an employer that can afford to pay higher levels to their assistants.