How to Choose a Dental Hygienist Program near Artesia California
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist college near Artesia CA is an essential first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you need to examine and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than selecting the college with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the college that is nearest to your residence. There are other significant issues to take into account also, including the college’s accreditation and reputation. Dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, as compared to a certificate usually earned by assistants, and can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to complete. Naturally with the prolonged training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these issues and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist schools you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Job of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the duties of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the main difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Artesia CA dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and present their findings to the dentists. They may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Instructing patients regarding oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in almost all states, dental hygienists must have graduated from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They must also pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam as well as any state licensure examinations. Once they have completed these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
Because of the increased responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Artesia CA dental offices are normally required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can take anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly every state. They are offered in community colleges as well as trade and technical schools. And in addition to classroom studies learning the fundamentals of dental hygiene, there will be a clinical aspect to the training as well| A number of programs also offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Dental Hygienist Online Programs
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist program can be a good option for receiving your education. Just remember that the program will not be completely online, since there will be a clinical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available via your personal computer in the comfort of your Artesia CA home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while attending college, online dental classes make education a lot more accessible. Many may even charge lower tuition costs than their on-campus counterparts. And added expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced as well. The clinical training can typically be performed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to obtain the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this style of education, you may find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online program is the best option for you.
Subjects to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Artesia CA, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many prospective students start by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they search for several online options also. Although these are relevant initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the schools you are looking at in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are a number of important reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a requirement in nearly all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the education you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Artesia CA employers frequently desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, often they are not available for non-accredited programs.
Is Enough Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an essential portion of any dental training program. This holds true for the online college options as well. Most dental hygienist schools have relationships with local dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the school you enroll in offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the school you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Artesia CA dental practice that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are evaluating have internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the most effective method to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a real dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Many graduating students of dental hygienist programs need help getting their first job. Ask if the programs you are looking at have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Artesia CA dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classes Smaller? Check with the colleges you are evaluating how big on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more personal atmosphere for learning where students have greater access to the teachers. On the other hand, bigger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the Artesia CA dental hygienist college that you are leaning toward in order to experience first hand the level of interaction between students and teachers before enrolling.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can fluctuate in cost based on the duration of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, for instance the reputations of the colleges and if they are public or private also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant costs which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when examining the cost of schools, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to find out what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Artesia CA area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that fit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and have to go to classes near Artesia CA in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online program, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up practice is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Artesia CA?
Artesia is a city in southeast Los Angeles County, California. Artesia was incorporated on May 29, 1959 and is one of Los Angeles County's Gateway Cities. The city has a 2010 census population of 16,522. Artesia is surrounded on the west, south, and east sides by Cerritos, with Norwalk to the north. Artesia is the home of the East West Ice Palace, an ice rink which is co-owned by Michelle Kwan. It was also the childhood home of former First Lady Pat Nixon, who lived there from 1914 to 1931, though the property on which she grew up is now part of neighboring Cerritos.
The village of Artesia was established upon the completion of the Artesia School District on May 3, 1875. It was named for the many flowing artesian wells in the area, which made the village ideal for farming and agriculture.
In the 1920s and 1930s, Dutch and Portuguese farmers developed Artesia into one of the most important dairy districts in Southern California. After World War II, as with many other cities in the region, Artesia was pressured by developers to build residential tracts. The city of Dairy Valley was incorporated in 1956, and later became the city of Cerritos. As the demand for housing continued, dairymen moved their operations further east into Chino and north into the Central Valley. Artesia finally incorporated on May 29, 1959.
In 1993, the Artesia Historical Society was formed, with the mission of preserving and protecting the archives and historic sites of the city. In 2002, the Historical Society salvaged and restored one of the last remaining Spanish-styled homes in the city into a historical civic museum open to the public.
Find the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Artesia CA
Selecting the right dental hygienist course is crucial if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are many options available to obtain your education and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can obtain your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these programs normally obtain an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require about two years of studies prior to entering the job market. When earning a degree you can elect to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you choose to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be in a better position to make the ideal choice. And as a result, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Artesia CA.
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