How to Pick a Dental Hygienist Program near Canaan Connecticut
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist college near Canaan CT is an essential first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than selecting the training with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your residence. There are other important factors to consider as well, including 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 accomplish. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will talk about all of these considerations and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist schools you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s review the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the role of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the most significant difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Canaan CT practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, work with the patients more on an individual basis. They are usually the initial person a patient sees when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and report their findings to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s duties may include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Educating patients regarding oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
To qualify for licensing in nearly 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 Examination as well as any state licensure exams. After they have completed these requirements they are deemed fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
Because of the additional responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Canaan CT dental offices are often required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can take anywhere from two to as long as three years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in virtually 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| Some programs also sponsor internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Training
Choosing an online dental hygienist program can be a viable option for getting your education. Just remember that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be provided via your personal computer in the comfort of your Canaan CT home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those working while attending school, online dental programs make education much more obtainable. Many may even have lower tuition fees than their on-campus counterparts. And additional expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced as well. The practical training can usually 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 appropriate education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this style of education, you may find that attending an online dental hygienist college is the right option for you.
What to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Canaan CT, you can start the process of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many potential students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Possibly they look for some online options also. Even though these may be important initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the programs you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and final selection of the right dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a condition in nearly all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the training you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Canaan CT employers often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not available for non-accredited schools.
Is Enough Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a necessary part of any dental training program. This is true for the online college options as well. Most dental hygienist programs have associations with regional dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only important that the program you choose offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the college you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Canaan CT dental practice that specializes in dental treatment for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are considering sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the ideal way to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a professional dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form professional relationships in the Canaan CT dentistry community. And they are attractive on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist schools require assistance getting their first job. Find out if the schools 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 Canaan CT dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are Classes Small? Check with the programs you are interested in how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes usually provide a more intimate atmosphere for learning where students have greater access to the teachers. Conversely, large classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can monitor a couple of classes at the Canaan CT dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Entire Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene training can differ in cost dependent on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other variables, 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 substantial 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 programs, remember to include all of the expenses associated with your education. Most schools have financial aid departments, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Canaan CT area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist college, you must confirm that the assistant or hygienist program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is particularly true if you will be working while getting your education and must attend classes near Canaan CT in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online program, you will still be required to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up practice is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Canaan CT?
New Canaan, Connecticut
New Canaan /nuː ˈkeɪnən/ is an affluent town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States, 12 miles (19 km) northeast of Greenwich, 36 miles (58 km) west of New Haven and 48 miles (77 km) northeast of New York City. The population was 19,738 according to the 2010 census. In 2008 New Canaan had the highest median family income in the country.
Considered part of Connecticut's Gold Coast, New Canaan is known for its public school system, its wide range of architecture from the Harvard Five modern homes to historic New England colonials and farmhouses, as well as a signature town center with premiere shopping, classic boutiques, and an elaborate display of lights for the Holidays. Residents carol on Church Hill every Christmas Eve, a town tradition since 1916.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 22.5 square miles (58 km2), of which 22.1 square miles (57 km2) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2), or 1.56%, is water. New Canaan is the only municipality on the Connecticut Panhandle that does not border the coast. Such proximity to New York City proved worthy of its own connection to the New Haven Railroad, being the only town to do so. New Canaan station and Talmadge Hill station are both on the New Canaan Branch of the New Haven Line, and transfer is possible in Stamford south to Manhattan. Many New Canaan residents commute to New York regularly, with travel time to Grand Central Terminal approximately 70 minutes. New Canaan is also heavily served by the historic Merritt Parkway, as the third municipality when driving through Connecticut from New York City.
The downtown area consists of many fine restaurants, an old Bow Tie Cinemas movie theater, library, the Victorian train station, antique shops, a book store, a saddlery boutique and various fine clothing and interior decorating shops. In addition to the many local boutiques and businesses, many national chains stores can be found in the downtown area, including Ralph Lauren and Ralph Lauren Children, Ann Taylor, J. McLaughlin, Papyrus, Vineyard Vines, Le Pain Quotidien, and Starbucks, among others. There are also several churches in town (Catholic and various Protestant denominations) as well as the historic Roger Sherman Inn, established in 1740. Most major banks and many wealth managements firms have a presence in New Canaan, including J.P Morgan, Merrill Lynch, Wells Fargo, UBS, Citibank and Bank of America, among others. Several hedge funds are also based in New Canaan.
Select the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Canaan CT
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist program is crucial 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 several options available to obtain your education and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these schools usually obtain an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require about 2 years of studies prior to entering the job market. When pursuing a degree you can choose to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the appropriate choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Canaan CT.
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