Salary and Outlook
According to the US Department of Labor, there are 33,100 people employed as dental laboratory technicians in
the United States.
The median annual salary is $42,100.
Entry level employees earn approximately $27,060 per year and senior employees earn approximately $67,010
Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.
- Remove excess metal or porcelain and polish surfaces of prostheses or frameworks, using polishing machines.
- Read prescriptions or specifications and examine models or impressions to determine the design of dental products to be constructed.
- Test appliances for conformance to specifications and accuracy of occlusion, using articulators and micrometers.
- Melt metals or mix plaster, porcelain, or acrylic pastes and pour materials into molds or over frameworks to form dental prostheses or apparatus.
- Create a model of patient's mouth by pouring plaster into a dental impression and allowing plaster to set.
- Place tooth models on apparatus that mimics bite and movement of patient's jaw to evaluate functionality of model.
- Fabricate, alter, or repair dental devices, such as dentures, crowns, bridges, inlays, or appliances for straightening teeth.
- Apply porcelain paste or wax over prosthesis frameworks or setups, using brushes and spatulas.
- Prepare metal surfaces for bonding with porcelain to create artificial teeth, using small hand tools.
- Load newly constructed teeth into porcelain furnaces to bake the porcelain onto the metal framework.
- Build and shape wax teeth, using small hand instruments and information from observations or dentists' specifications.
- Mold wax over denture setups to form the full contours of artificial gums.
- Rebuild or replace linings, wire sections, or missing teeth to repair dentures.
- Prepare wax bite blocks and impression trays for use.
- Train or supervise other dental technicians or dental laboratory bench workers.
- Shape and solder wire and metal frames or bands for dental products, using soldering irons and hand tools.
- Fill chipped or low spots in surfaces of devices, using acrylic resins.