How to Find the Right Dental Hygienist Training Program near Bethel Connecticut
Picking the right dental hygienist program near Bethel CT is an important initial step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you must assess and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than choosing the school with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the college that is nearest to your home. There are other significant factors to consider also, for instance the school’s accreditation and reputation. Dental hygienists typically 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 cost. We will discuss all of these considerations and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist programs you are analyzing later in this article. But first, let’s review the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Function of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the role of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the most significant difference is probably that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Bethel CT practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are frequently the initial person a patient encounters when called from the waiting area. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and present their results to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties can include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Educating patients about oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
In order to be licensed in nearly all states, dental hygienists must have graduated from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They also must pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam as well as any state licensure exams. After they have fulfilled these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
As a result of the additional responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Bethel CT dental practices are often 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 complete and must be accredited by the CDA in almost every state. They are offered in trade and vocational schools as well as community colleges. And in addition to classroom studies learning the fundamentals of dental hygiene, there will be a practical aspect to the training as well| Some programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Hygienist Online Colleges
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist college might be a good alternative for obtaining your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be available via your desktop computer in the comfort of your Bethel CT home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental classes make education a lot more accessible. Many may even offer lower tuition costs than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened also. The practical training can usually 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 method of education, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online college is the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Bethel CT, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of potential students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Possibly they look for several online alternatives also. Although these are relevant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the programs you are looking at in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have furnished a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and final selection of the best dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in almost all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Bethel CT employers frequently desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, often they are not obtainable for non-accredited schools.
Is Enough Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a necessary component of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options as well. A number of dental hygienist schools have relationships with local dental practices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the college you choose provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Bethel CT dental office that specializes in dental treatment for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Ask if the dental colleges you are exploring have an internship program. Internships are probably the best way 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 form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs require help getting their first job. Check if the programs you are considering have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Bethel CT dental profession as well as large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classrooms Small? Ask the programs you are looking at how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes generally provide a more personal environment for learning where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, large classes can be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can attend a couple of classes at the Bethel CT dental hygienist college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Entire Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene training can differ in cost depending on the length of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, for example the reputations of the colleges and if they are public or private also come into play. But along with the tuition there are other significant 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 examining the cost of schools, remember to include all of the costs associated with your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so make sure to find out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Bethel CT area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist college, you need to confirm that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while acquiring your education and must go to classes near Bethel CT in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still need to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up procedure is if you should need to miss any classes because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Bethel CT?
Bethel (/ˈbɛθəl/) is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States, about 69 miles (111 km) from New York City. Its population was 18,584 at the 2010 census. The town center is defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as a census-designated place (CDP). The core area of the town center has also been designated as a historic district.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 16.9 square miles (44 km2), of which 16.8 square miles (44 km2) is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2), or 0.53%, is water. The CDP corresponding to the town center has a total area of 4.1 square miles (11 km2), all land. Bethel borders Redding to the south, Danbury to the west, Brookfield to the north, and Newtown to the east.
As of the 2010 census Bethel had a population of 18,584. The racial and ethnic composition of the population was 88.8% white, 1.8% black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 4.5% Asian, 2.8% from some other race and 1.9% from two or more races. 7.6% of the population was Hispanic or Latino from any race.
As of the census of 2000, there were 18,067 people, 6,505 households, and 4,846 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,075.7 people per square mile (415.5/km²). There were 6,653 housing units at an average density of 396.1 per square mile (153.0/km²). The racial makeup of the town in 2005 was 85.86% White, 1.91% African American, 0.26% Native American, 4.58% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 3.20% from other races or of multiple races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.33% of the population. 20.2% were of Italian, 17.5% Irish, 9.1% German, 7.0% English, 6.7% American and 6.0% Polish ancestry according to Census 2000. 88.7% spoke English, 4.4% Spanish, 3.3% Portuguese, 1.5% German and 1.0% French as their first language.
Enroll in the Ideal Dental Hygienist College near Bethel CT
Enrolling in the ideal dental hygienist course is important if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous alternatives available to receive your education and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at junior colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these programs normally earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require approximately two years of studies prior to entering the job market. When earning a degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you decide to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the right choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Bethel CT.
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