Do you want to become a dental hygienist? Are you looking for the best trade schools for dental hygienist? Are looking for an article that will provide you with concise information about a career in dental hygiene? If yes, then this article will provide you with the information you need.
We have listed some of the schools that offer top-notch dental hygienist programs and other tips about a career in this field. All you need to do is read this article to the end.
Who is a Dental Hygienist?
Dental hygienists are professionals in the healthcare industry who are licensed and work with dentists to take care of the oral health of patients and help them with the information they to make to maintain overall their overall dental health.
However, the core goal of a dental hygienist is to treat and prevent diseases that affect the teeth and gum of patients. Some of the duties of a dental hygienist include brushing teeth, examining teeth and gums, taking x-rays, keeping medical records, and teaching patients about proper oral care.
Your Job as a Dental Hygienist
On the job, you should expect to check each patient’s health and look closely at their teeth and oral structure, as some patients require x-rays. You will help dentists create an oral care plan and work with patients to create an oral hygiene plan that is right for them.
It is also your duty to remove plaque from the patient’s teeth (this process is called periodontal debridement), and depending on the situation at hand, you may need to apply prophylactic sealant. Some conditions may require you to apply fluoride and desensitizing agents to the teeth. If the patient is undergoing dental treatment, you can give nitrous oxide or pain-relieving injections.
You assess the oral health of your patients and tell the dentist what you find. You document each patient’s treatment (with pen and physical file or tablet) and then train your patients on good oral care habits.
You advise the patient to choose a suitable toothbrush (soft or hard and dental floss). You will also show patients how to floss and brush properly. This may mean teaching younger children to brush their teeth.
Continue reading g to discover the best trade schools for dental hygienist and you can become a dental hygienist.
Also Read: 20 Best Dental Hygienist Schools in the USA
How can one become a Dental Hygienist?
Dental hygienist requirements vary by state, but most require you to complete at least an associate’s degree, pass the state dental hygienist exam, and be licensed in the state where you practice. If you know you want to follow this path in high school, consider taking advanced courses in chemistry, biology, and math.
Here are some steps to consider while choosing a career in this field:
Earn an associate degree.
Before starting a career as a dental hygienist, you must complete an associate degree. You can also take a Bachelor’s or a Master’s degree if you want to, but these are rarer and usually only required for professions such as teaching or research.
Complete the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination.
After completing your associate’s degree, you must take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination. The test consists of 350 questions and is divided into two parts – one part is based on discipline while the other is case-based.
Complete all required state licenses.
After you have sat and passed the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, research the type of license required by the state in which you want to practice. What is required varies from state to state. However, it almost always requires completing an accredited oral health program, passing a dental hygiene board exam, and passing a state or regional exam.
Dental Hygienist Degree & Certification Options
Below are a few things you need to about the dental hygienist degree and certifications offered in the trade schools on this list.
As a dental hygienist one of your core duties is to take x-rays of patients so that suitable treatment plans can be drawn up. Depending on where and how your program is set up, you be in a dental hygienist program that offers this as a secondary program or it can be offered as a primary dental assistant program with a radiology program.
Also Read: 20 Best Dental Hygienist Schools In Texas
Dental Anatomy is part of the Dental Hygiene program. You will learn about the anatomy of the teeth and the morphology of the roots, as well as the anatomy of the head and neck.
Prevention of Oral Disease
A good oral hygiene program aims to prevent oral diseases. As a dental hygienist, most of your tasks will be finding and advising patients on maintaining their teeth and oral health. This includes educating them about gum disease and tooth decay.
Dental Hygiene Clinical
As part of your program in dental hygiene, you participate in clinical dental hygiene. This means that you will develop clinical service skills and gain important clinical experience. Clinical skills include working directly with patients, providing dental care and providing patients with the information they need to maintain healthy oral health in general.
“Oral pathology” has to do with the basic knowledge of gross pathology, microscopic pathology and general pathological processes. This aspect of your dental hygienist program will focus on periodontal and dental tissues, including the supporting structures of the mouth.
This knowledge is very vital to you as a dental hygienist because you are actively involved in looking for traces and early signs of oral diseases.
Below are some of the best trade schools for dental hygienist in 2023.
List of Trade Schools for Dental Hygienists
- New York University
- Pima Medical Institute
- Texas A&M University
- University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
- Fortis Institute
- University of Southern California
- Concorde Career College
- Clover Park Technical College
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Fox Valley Technical College
#1. New York University
Students who want a career in preventive oral care and health promotion can benefit from the top-notch clinical and academic opportunities in the NYU College of Dentistry program. Dental hygienists are an important part of the healthcare team, working with dentists to meet patients’ oral health needs and improve their quality of life.
Depending on your interest, you can earn a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Dental Hygiene, or you can go for the Associate in Applied Science (AAS) in Dental.
All of these degrees are accredited and offered at the school through the Department of Dental Hygiene & Dental Assisting.
Also Read: 5 Best Dental Hygienist Schools in Colorado
#2. Pima Medical Institute
The Pima Medical Institute is an excellent school offering a dental hygienist program designed to provide you with the personal and professional skills necessary to work as a dental hygienist within a dental team and the larger dental community.
The program’s courses combine classroom instruction with laboratory work and on-site clinical experience to provide you with the skills and knowledge necessary to provide ethical and caring dental care to recognized standards.
#3. Texas A&M University
The Caruth School of Dental Hygiene at Texas A&M University is one of the best trade schools for dental hygienists on this list. The program is offered by the school student to become preventive dental hygiene professionals who can provide educational, clinical, and therapeutic services to support general health by promoting optimal oral health.
Their dental hygiene program provides students with an opportunity to be of service in private dental practices, healthcare facilities, schools, hospitals, dental clinics, government agencies, industry, education and research.
#4. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
The University of Michigan-Ann Arbor offers students a variety of career opportunities. Their oral hygiene program offers students cutting-edge knowledge and experiential learning.
They offer a two-year bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene. Their programs focus on the social, behavioural and biological sciences and prepare students to practice modern oral hygiene and take leadership roles in the oral care of the future.
They also offer dental hygiene programs for those with associate’s and two-year master’s degrees.
#5. Fortis Institute
This is one of the trade schools for dental hygienist that you need to consider. Fortis Dental Hygienist training program offers a carefully designed curriculum that combines traditional classroom instruction, laboratory work and small group hands-on development to prepare students for this exciting and rewarding career. You will have many opportunities to gain practical knowledge while working in a clinical setting.
Fortis has branches of their school in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Utah, Alabama and Georgia – this is where they offer their dental hygienist training programs.
Also Read: 15 Best Dental Hygienist Schools in Florida
#6. University of Southern California
The University of Southern California is a top university and its dental hygiene programs are tailored to educate and develop dental hygiene leaders for careers in diverse and changing healthcare environments.
They offer free education and exceptional clinical experience. The dental hygiene program offered at the bachelor’s degree level combines the sciences of dentistry and oral hygiene, the sciences that support them, and general education.
The purpose of the program is to create a humane educational environment that promotes the growth of responsible, ethical oral hygiene professionals who understand patient needs and have the skills to perform hygienic procedures.
#7. Concorde Career College
Concorde Career College is one of the best trade schools for dental hygienist that offer offers a Dental Hygiene Assistant program that provides the scientific training, expertise, and clinical expertise you need to help others maintain oral (and general) health.
The dental hygienist programs offered by this institution is accredited by CODA, a professional accrediting agency recognized by the US Department of Education.
#8. Clover Park Technical College
CPTC’s dental assistant program rewards all three qualities an employer expects from its employees: hands-on experience, reliability and a positive attitude that fits the social dynamics of the workplace.
A dental assistant degree usually only takes five quarters to complete – you can earn an excellent degree and be ready for a great career in just one year!
Also Read: 20 Best Dental Hygienist Schools in New Jersey
#9. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
The Adams School of Dentistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill offers a dental hygiene program at the undergraduate level.
The school offers a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene (BSDH) to individuals who have taken the time to complete the general education requirements of a four-year college education and the core dental hygiene curriculum.
Transfer students can take these courses before enrolling in the dental hygienist program, between summer sessions of the first and second year, in the last spring semester, or in the first summer after graduation.
10. Fox Valley Technical College
Fox Valley Technical College is one of the best trade schools for dental hygienist on this list. In this program, you will learn to administer local anaesthesia, nitrous oxide/oxygen sedation, and the skills needed to use X-rays to diagnose dental disease.
In addition, you will learn how to keep patient documents and receive instructions for informing patients about nutrition, oral hygiene and dental care. On completion you will be eligible to take the Central Regional Dental Testing Service Practical test and the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination – these tests will qualify you to become and addressed as a registered dental hygienist.
What is the Difference Between Dental Schools and Dental Hygienist Schools
Dental schools are different from dental hygienist schools in terms of curriculum as there are courses taught in a dental school that won’t be taught in a dental hygienist program. However, most of what will be taught in a dental school are the same thing that someone in a dental hygienist program will experience, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re interchangeable.
In addition, dental students spend part of the years of their undergraduate studies immersed in a research-oriented, broad-based program where they complete required courses. In contrast, a program in dental hygiene will prepare you to become a dental hygienist. As a student in dental hygiene, you don’t focus too much on sciences or liberal arts.
What is the Average Salary of a Dental Hygienist?
The average salary is dental hygienist will earn varies and will depend on the level of experience, location and employment. On average, what a dental hygienist earns in the US is $86,183 per year or $41.73 per hour. You can find Indeed’s latest salary information here.
What is the Difference between a Dental Hygienist and an Assistant?
Dental assistants and dental hygienists both work under and are supervised by a dentist, but they do different jobs in a dental office. The role of a dental assistant is to prepare dental offices and equipment for dentists and dental hygienists. They help dentists and hygienists with everything they need during procedures, such as providing dental instruments and sterilization equipment. Dental hygienists communicate more directly with patients and perform more complex procedures, such as removing hard and soft layers from teeth.
How long does it take to become Certified as a Dental Hygienist?
Most dental hygiene schools schedule their programs to last about two years or four semesters, which translates to about 80-83 credits. During this two-year program, your education will be complete, including courses in basic science and clinical dental hygiene.
Becoming a Dental Hygienist Requires Interpersonal Skills…
attending any of the best trade schools for dental hygienists is good. However, below are some interpersonal skills you can use in your job as a dental hygienist:
- Critical thinking and problem-solving. Each mouth is unique, so an action plan must be created for each patient.
- Communication Skills: Every day you will interact with patients, dentists, office staff, dental assistants, patient families and others.
- Attention to detail: In order to make a diagnosis or develop an action plan for each patient, special attention must be paid to their individual circumstances.
- Dexterity. As a dental hygienist, a large part of your work involves using your hands, handling dental instruments, and more.
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