Dental Billing Courses and Training Programs

Dental billing courses familiarize students with dental procedures and their corresponding codes in order to accurately bill insurance companies. These courses are normally completed as part of a full undergraduate training program. Get info about some common courses in dental billing.

Essential Information

Dental billing courses are usually offered through certificate or associate's degree programs in dental assisting, but they are also available through dental office administration training programs. Programs in both areas of study normally include both front-end office and clinical training. Dental assisting programs commonly also prepare students to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam.

Although the completion time is generally a year for a certificate and two years for an associate's degree, dental assisting schools sometimes offer accelerated programs that have flexible scheduling and can be completed in a shorter amount of time. Online programs in the dental field exist as well. Such programs usually include much of the coursework online, but students do any required clinical experience or externship at a local worksite.

List of Dental Billing Courses

Some dental billing courses one might encounter in a dental assisting or dental office administration program are described below.

Dental Terminology

This course is usually one of the first classes completed by dental billing students. It covers dental vocabulary and terminology and explains how they are used. Students also study root words, word parts, abbreviations, correct spelling and pronunciation.

Introduction to Dental Billing

Students in this course study the codes used by the American Dental Association and learn which codes represent each of the various dental procedures. They study the claims process commonly used by health insurance companies so they can document the coding and bill the insurance company for the procedure. This class teaches students how to read dental coding correctly so procedures can be accurately priced.

Dental Anatomy

This course familiarizes students with the different types of teeth and how they're numbered. Students draw permanent teeth and label the individual parts of a tooth, such as the root and the crown. This course teaches dental billing students to identify which tooth is having a procedure in order to ensure that the insurance company is correctly billed. Typical coursework includes filling out insurance forms and participating in a mock submission process.

Dental Office Management

Dental billing students in this course master the basics of running a dental office. They gain organizational and communications skills in order to complete clerical tasks and interact with patients. Students may learn computer applications and software.

Training Programs

Individuals interested in a dental billing career typically complete a certificate or diploma program in dental office administration or a similar program. Most programs can be completed in one year or less. In addition to dental billing and coding, students enrolled in dental office administration programs learn many clerical skills, including organizing records, updating databases, processing payments and scheduling appointments. Students can find online programs or attend classes in person.

Certificate and associate's degree programs in dental assisting often provide training in dental billing. Dental assisting students learn many of the same clerical tasks that are taught in dental administration programs but focus mainly on acquiring clinical skills. Dental billing training plays a minor role in the dental assisting program.

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