How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist Program near Marathon Florida
Choosing the right dental hygienist program near Marathon FL is an important initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you need to assess and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than choosing the school with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the college that is nearest to your residence. There are other important issues to consider also, including the college’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 two to three years to finish. Obviously with the longer training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will discuss all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist colleges you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s look at the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Duties of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the job of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the main difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Marathon FL dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the initial person a patient encounters when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and report their findings to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Teaching patients about oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in almost all states, dental hygienists must have graduated 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. After they have completed these requirements they are considered fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
As a result of the additional responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Marathon FL dental offices are generally 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 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 clinical aspect to the training as well| Many programs also sponsor internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Dental Hygienist Online Training
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist school may be a good alternative for obtaining your education. Just remember that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be provided by means of your personal computer in the convenience of your Marathon FL home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while going to college, online dental programs make education a lot more accessible. Some may even charge lower tuition fees than their on-campus competitors. And added expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened as well. The practical training can often be performed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to obtain the proper education is provided. If you have the dedication for this method of learning, you might find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist program is the ideal choice for you.
Issues to Cover With Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Marathon FL, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, a number of prospective students start by looking at the location and the cost of the schools. Maybe they search for some online options as well. Although these may be relevant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you need to address to the programs you are comparing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have included a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are planning to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in almost all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Marathon FL employers often prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not offered for non-accredited colleges.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an essential component of every dental training program. This is true for the online college options also. Many dental hygienist programs have partnerships with local dental practices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the school you enroll in offers sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the college you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Marathon FL dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Verify if the dental colleges you are looking at 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 establish professional relationships in the Marathon FL dentistry community. And they are attractive on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist schools require assistance obtaining their first job. Find out if the programs you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Marathon FL dental community in addition to large networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Small? Find out from the colleges you are looking at how big typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally provide a more personal environment for learning where students have greater access to the teachers. Conversely, bigger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can sit in on a few classes at the Marathon FL dental hygienist school that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the degree of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Entire Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can fluctuate in cost depending on the duration of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and whether 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 commuting and textbooks as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when comparing the cost of programs, remember to include all of the expenses related to your education. The majority of colleges have financial assistance offices, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Marathon FL area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you need to verify that the hygienist or assistant program offers classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while receiving your education and need to go to classes near Marathon FL at nights or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online school, you will still need to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up practice is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Marathon FL?
Marathon is a city on Knight's Key, Boot Key, Key Vaca, Fat Deer Key, Long Point Key, Crawl Key and Grassy Key islands in the middle of the Florida Keys, in Monroe County, Florida, United States. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 10,255. As of 2014, the population estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau was 8,708.
Though the area has been settled for some time, Marathon is a relatively new city, incorporated in 1999. The city's boundaries (according to both the city and a 2001 Rand McNally road map of the Keys) extend from the east end of the Seven Mile Bridge (Mile Marker 47) to the west end of Tom's Harbor Bridge (Mile Marker 61), excluding that portion of the area within the city limits of Key Colony Beach. Among the islands found within the city limits are Boot Key, Knight's Key, Hog Key, Vaca Key, Stirrup Key, Crawl Key, Little Crawl Key, East and West Sister’s Island, Deer Key, Fat Deer Key (excluding the portion in Key Colony Beach), Long Point Key, and Grassy Key.
The name Marathon dates back to the origin of the Florida East Coast Railroad. The name came about by the railroad workers who were working night and day to complete the railway – due to the unrelenting pace and struggle to complete the project, many of the workers complained that "this [the project] is getting to be a real Marathon", and was later used to name the local station along the railroad.
The late noted Keys historian Dan Gallager in his book "Florida's Great Ocean Railway" credits New York playwright Wiiter Bynner for naming Marathon. According to Gallager, J.R. Parrott, then Florida East Coast Railway's President and General Manager, invited Brynner to the Keys to 'plot stations for the railroad.' When asked to generate a name for the station at Key Vaca, Brynner proposed the name Marathon, inspired by the following passage from Byron: "The mountains look on Marathon -- and Marathon looks on the sea."
Find the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Marathon FL
Picking the ideal dental hygienist program is crucial if you intend to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are many options available to acquire your education and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these programs usually obtain an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists normally require about two years of studies before they enter the work force. When obtaining a degree you can elect to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you elect to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the best selection. And as a result, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Marathon FL.
More Great Cities in Florida
Business Results 1 - 10 of 1