Dental Hygienist Schools Near Me in East Lyme CT 06333

How to Select a Dental Hygienist Training Program near East Lyme Connecticut

East Lyme CT dental hygienist with patientPicking the right dental hygienist program near East Lyme CT is an essential first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must examine and compare your school options. There is much more to doing your due diligence than selecting the program with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your home. There are other significant factors to consider also, including the school’s reputation and accreditation. Dental hygienists generally earn an Associate Degree, as compared to a certificate usually earned by assistants, and can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to complete. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist programs you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s look at the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.

The Role of a Dental Hygienist

East Lyme CT pediatric dental hygienist with patientWhen contrasting the duties of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the biggest difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the East Lyme CT practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are typically the first person a patient encounters when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and present their findings to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties can include:

  • Removing tartar, stains and plaque
  • Administering fluoride treatments
  • Polishing teeth and applying sealants
  • Instructing patients about oral hygiene
  • Taking and developing X-rays
  • Applying fillings and removing sutures

In order to be licensed 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 licensing exams. Once they have completed these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.

Dental Hygienist Education Options

As a result of the increased responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists working in East Lyme CT dental offices are often required to hold 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 nearly 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 offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.

Dental Hygienist Online Colleges

attending dental hygienist school online in East Lyme CTSelecting an online dental hygienist program might be a good option for getting your education. Just remember that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be provided via your desktop computer in the convenience of your East Lyme CT home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those working while going to school, online dental classes make education far more accessible. Some may even offer lower tuition rates than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced as well. The practical training can typically be performed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything needed to receive the proper education is furnished. If you have the dedication for this method of learning, you may find that attending an online dental hygienist program is the right choice for you.

Points to Cover With Dental  Hygienist Schools

teeth cleaned by East Lyme CT dental hygienistNow that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in East Lyme CT, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the start of this article, a number of prospective students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Maybe they look for several online options also. Although these may be important initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the programs you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have included a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the right dental hygienist school for you.

Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are intending to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a requirement in virtually all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the training you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. East Lyme CT employers often prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, often they are not offered for non-accredited programs.

Is Sufficient Practical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is a necessary component of any dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. A number of dental hygienist programs have relationships with regional dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the school you select provides sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local East Lyme CT dental practice that focuses on dental treatment for children.

Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental colleges you are evaluating have internship programs. Internships are probably the ideal method to obtain hands-on, clinical experience in a professional dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students build professional relationships in the East Lyme CT dentistry community. And they look good on resumes as well.

Is Job Placement Support Offered? Most graduating students of dental hygienist schools need assistance getting their first job. Ask if the programs you are researching have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the East Lyme CT dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.

Are Classrooms Small? Check with the programs you are looking at how large on average their classes are. The smaller classes generally provide a more personal atmosphere for training where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, bigger classes can be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If feasible, ask if you can monitor a few classes at the East Lyme CT dental hygienist school that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the level of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.

 What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can differ in cost depending on the length of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, such as 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 comparing the cost of colleges, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. Most colleges have financial assistance offices, so make sure to find out what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the East Lyme CT area.

Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist college, you need to confirm that the assistant or hygienist program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you will be working while acquiring your education and must go to classes near East Lyme CT at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online program, you will still need to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up policy is if you should have to miss any classes because of work, illness or family responsibilities.

Attending Dental Hygienist School near East Lyme CT?

East Lyme, Connecticut

East Lyme is located in southern New London County, west of Waterford and Montville, east of Lyme and Old Lyme, and south of Salem. Long Island Sound is to the south. According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 42.0 square miles (109 km2), of which 34.0 square miles (88 km2) is land and 7.9 square miles (20 km2), or 18.89%, is water.

The town consists primarily of two villages, Flanders and Niantic. It is common for the town of East Lyme to be erroneously called "Niantic", due to this side of town being the "beach" side which is popular with tourists and visitors in the summer months. Niantic's population doubles in the summer months for the beach season, and it has a much higher density than the more sparsely populated Flanders side of town, which is known for its apple orchards, the town's high school, and forest.

The village of Niantic gets its name from the Niantic or Nehantic people, whose ranging grounds once extended from Wecapaug Brook, in what is now Rhode Island, to the Connecticut River. Shortly before the first settlers arrived, the Pequots had invaded Nehantic territory and annexed about half of the land claimed by the tribe. According to local historian Olive Tubbs Chendali:

Sportfishing and marinas dominate the village's industry along with summer tourism and restaurant trade. Strong regional businesses include seafood restaurants and hotels/motels serving the town's beaches and the casinos at Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun. Rocky Neck State Park features camping, swimming and picnic areas along with numerous marinas and sportfishing companies.

The location could not be found.

Enroll in the Ideal Dental Hygienist Program near East Lyme CT

Enrolling in the ideal dental hygienist program is important if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are many options offered to receive your education and it takes a fairly short period of time to become a dental hygienist. You can obtain your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these programs typically earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists usually require about 2 years of studies prior to entering the work force. 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 better prepared to make the appropriate choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in East Lyme CT.

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