How to Pick a Dental Hygienist College near North Haven Connecticut
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist program near North Haven CT is an essential initial step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you need to assess and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than picking the school with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the college that is nearest to your residence. There are other significant factors to take into account as well, for instance the school’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 accomplish. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will discuss all of these factors 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 roles of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Duties of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the duties of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the main difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the North Haven CT practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on an individual basis. They are usually the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and present their results 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
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Educating patients about oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
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 fulfilled these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
As a result of the added responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in North Haven CT dental practices are normally required to hold an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can require anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to finish 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 component to the training as well| A number of programs also sponsor internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Dental Hygienist Online Programs
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist school might be a good alternative for receiving your training. Just remember that the program will not be totally online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be available via your personal computer in the convenience of your North Haven CT home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental programs make education much more accessible. Some may even have lower tuition fees than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened also. The practical training can often be completed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to receive the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this method of education, you might find that attending an online dental hygienist program is the ideal option for you.
Points to Cover With Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in North Haven CT, you can begin the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the start of this article, many potential students begin by looking at the location and the cost of the schools. Perhaps they look for several online options also. Although these are significant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you should address to the schools you are looking at in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, 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 School Accredited? There are many important reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually 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 ensure that the education you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. North Haven CT employers frequently prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not provided for non-accredited colleges.
Is Adequate Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an essential component of every dental training program. This applies for the online school options as well. Most dental hygienist schools have partnerships with local dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the college you choose offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently want to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the school you select offers clinical rotation in a local North Haven CT dental office that specializes in dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are evaluating sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal method to receive hands-on, clinical experience in a real dental practice. They make it easier for students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students build working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Furnished? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist schools require assistance getting their first job. Find out if the programs you are looking at have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the North Haven CT dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Smaller? Check with the colleges you are reviewing how big typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally provide a more intimate atmosphere for training where students have greater access to the instructors. On the other hand, bigger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If practical, find out if you can attend a couple of classes at the North Haven CT dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward in order to witness first hand the degree of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene training can fluctuate in cost dependent on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the colleges and if they are public or private also come into play. But besides the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of schools, don’t forget to include all of the costs associated with your education. Most colleges have financial assistance departments, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the North Haven CT area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you must verify that the hygienist or assistant program offers classes that accommodate your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and need to attend classes near North Haven CT in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online college, you will still have to schedule your practical 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 emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near North Haven CT?
North Haven, Connecticut
North Haven is home of the Quinnipiac University School of Health Sciences, the School of Nursing, School of Law, School of Education, and School of Medicine on Bassett Road. North Haven has easy access to Interstate 91 and the Wilbur Cross Parkway (Route 15). It is near Sleeping Giant State Park and less than 10 miles (16 km) from downtown New Haven and Yale University.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 21.1 square miles (54.6 km²), of which 20.8 square miles (53.8 km²) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.8 km²), or 1.52%, is water. North Haven is located less than 10 miles (16 km) from Long Island Sound.
North Haven is 27 miles (43 km) south of Hartford, 76 miles (122 km) northeast of New York City, 80 miles (130 km) west of Providence and 115 miles (185 km) southwest of Boston. The center of town is an area stretching along U.S. Route 5, from approximately its interchange with I-91 in the north to Bailey Road in the south.
In his will of 1714, the Reverend James Pierpont (1659–1714) of New Haven gave 8 acres (32,000 m2) to his neighbors in the Northeast Parish, as North Haven was called, "provided those neighbors will set their meeting house there and make their training and burying there."
Enroll in the Best Dental Hygienist School near North Haven CT
Enrolling in the right dental hygienist program is essential if you intend to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if required in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are many alternatives available to receive your education and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can receive your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these schools normally earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists normally require roughly 2 years of studies prior to entering the work force. When obtaining a degree you can elect to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you elect to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the best selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in North Haven CT.
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