How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist Training Program near Lake Hughes California
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist college near Lake Hughes CA is an essential initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you must analyze and compare your school options. There is much more to doing your due diligence than picking the school with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the program that is closest to your residence. There are other important factors to take into account as well, such as the school’s reputation and accreditation. Dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, as compared to a certificate usually earned by assistants, and can take anywhere from two to three years to finish. Obviously with the more extensive training of a hygienist comes more cost. We will cover all of these considerations and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist schools you are evaluating later in this article. But first, let’s look at the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Role of Dental Hygienists
When contrasting the duties of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the most significant difference is probably that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Lake Hughes CA practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on an individual basis. They are often the first person a patient encounters when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and report their results to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s duties may include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Instructing patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
To qualify for licensing in almost all states, dental hygienists must graduate 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. After they have completed these requirements they are considered fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
Due to the increased responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Lake Hughes CA dental offices are often required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can require anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to complete 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 practical aspect to the training as well| A number of programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Online Dental Hygienist Schools
Choosing an online dental hygienist college may be a good option for receiving your training. Just keep in mind that the program will not be completely online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available by means of your personal computer in the comfort of your Lake Hughes CA home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those working while going to school, online dental programs make education much more accessible. Many may even have lower tuition fees than their on-campus competitors. And additional expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced as well. The clinical training can typically be completed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to obtain the proper education is provided. If you have the discipline for this style of learning, you may find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist college is the ideal choice for you.
What to Cover With Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Lake Hughes CA, you can start the process of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Maybe they look for some online options as well. Although these may be relevant initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you should address to the schools you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the right dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a requirement in virtually 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 ensure that the instruction you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Lake Hughes CA employers often prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not offered for non-accredited colleges.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an essential portion of any dental training program. This is true for the online school options as well. Many dental hygienist colleges have relationships with area dental practices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only important that the school you choose offers sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Lake Hughes CA dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental schools you are considering sponsor an internship program. Internships are probably the most effective means 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 create working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist colleges require assistance landing their first job. Find out if the programs you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Lake Hughes CA dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classes Smaller? Find out from the schools you are interested in how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes usually provide a more intimate environment for training where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, larger classes often are impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If practical, find out if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the Lake Hughes CA dental hygienist college that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the degree of interaction between students and teachers before enrolling.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can fluctuate in cost depending on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other factors, for instance the reputations of the schools and whether they are public or private also come into play. But along with the tuition there are other substantial expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when comparing the cost of colleges, remember to add all of the costs associated with your education. Most schools have financial assistance offices, so make sure to ask what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Lake Hughes CA area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while getting your education and have to attend classes near Lake Hughes CA in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online program, you will still need to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up procedure is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Lake Hughes CA?
Lake Hughes, California
Lake Hughes is an unincorporated community in the foothills of the Sierra Pelona Mountains, northwest of Palmdale and north of the Santa Clarita Valley, in the Angeles National Forest. It is on the sag pond waters of Lake Hughes and Elizabeth Lake. The community is rural in character, with a population of 649 in 2010, but also has a strong recreational element centered on the three lakes in the vicinity. The community of Elizabeth Lake is located just east of Lake Hughes, sharing the same ZIP code.
Nearby Elizabeth Lake, known then as La Laguna de Chico Lopez, was a watering locale on Spanish colonial and Mexican El Camino Viejo in Alta California and the Gold Rush era Stockton – Los Angeles Road. From 1858 to 1861, Lake Hughes was on the route of the Butterfield Overland Mail, between the Widow Smith's Station and Mud Spring stage stops. The lake area was to the west of Rancho La Liebre, an 1846 Mexican land grant now part of Tejon Ranch.
Lake Hughes was named for Judge Griffith (Patrick) Hughes, who homesteaded the area around the turn of the 20th century. Settlers were drawn to the area because water was more plentiful than in the drier Antelope Valley.
In 1907 William Mulholland, superintendent of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, started work on the Elizabeth Lake Tunnel for transporting water in the Los Angeles Aqueduct from Owens Valley to Los Angeles. Less than a half a mile east of Lake Hughes, the five-mile-long (8 km) tunnel is 285 feet (87 m) under the valley floor. The tunnel was driven from both ends. The north portal is at Fairmont Reservoir and the south in Bear Canyon (now Portal Canyon) just off of Green Valley. This 11-foot-wide (3.4 m) tunnel was driven 27,000 ft (8.2 km) through solid rock and met in the center within 1½ inches (3.8 cm) in line and ⅝ inches (1.6 cm) in depth. Work was around the clock and averaged about 11 feet (3.4 m) per day. The Elizabeth Lake Tunnel was the largest single construction project on the Los Angeles Aqueduct and set speed records in its day.
Find the Best Dental Hygienist Program near Lake Hughes CA
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist course is imperative if you intend to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are a number of options available to obtain your training and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental hygienist. You can obtain your formal education through dental programs at junior colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these programs generally earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require roughly two years of studies prior to entering the job market. When pursuing a degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you decide to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be in a better position to make the best choice. And as a result, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Lake Hughes CA.
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