How to Find the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Newberry Florida
Picking the right dental hygienist program near Newberry FL is an important first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you need to assess and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than choosing the college with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the college that is closest to your home. There are other important factors to consider also, such as the school’s reputation and accreditation. Dental hygienists typically earn an Associate Degree, as compared to a certificate usually earned by assistants, and can take anywhere from two to three years to complete. Naturally with the longer training of a hygienist comes more cost. We will cover all of these factors and additional questions that you need to 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 offered.
The Job of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the duties of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the main difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Newberry FL practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the first person a patient encounters when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and report their findings to the dentists. They may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Educating patients about oral hygiene
- 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 in addition to passing any state licensing exams. When they have fulfilled these requirements they are considered fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
Due to the additional responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Newberry FL dental offices are generally required to hold 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 nearly 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 component to the training as well| A number of programs also offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Dental Hygienist Online Training Programs
Selecting an online dental hygienist school might be a good option for receiving your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be provided via your personal computer in the convenience of your Newberry FL home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while going to college, online dental programs make education far more accessible. Many may even have lower tuition costs than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced as well. The practical training can typically be completed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything necessary to get the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the dedication for this mode of learning, you may find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online program is the best option for you.
Questions to Ask Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Newberry FL, you can start the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many students start by checking out the location and the cost of the colleges. Maybe they search for several online options as well. Even though these are important initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to ask of the schools you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the right dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are a number of important reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a condition in nearly all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the training you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Newberry FL employers frequently prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a necessary component of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. Many dental hygienist programs have relationships with area dental offices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only important that the college you enroll in provides sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, check that the school you select offers clinical rotation in a local Newberry FL dental practice that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Verify if the dental programs you are exploring sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal 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 form professional relationships in the Newberry FL dentistry community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs need help obtaining their first job. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Newberry FL dental profession in addition to broad networks of contacts where they can position their students for employment or internships.
Are Classes Small? Find out from the programs you are looking at how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes generally provide a more intimate environment for training where students have greater access to the instructors. On the other hand, larger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If practical, ask if you can attend a couple of classes at the Newberry FL dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can experience first hand the degree of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene training can differ in cost based on the length of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and if they are private or public also have an impact. But along with the tuition there are other significant costs 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 examining the cost of colleges, don’t forget to add all of the expenses associated with your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to check out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Newberry FL area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist college, you must make sure that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that accommodate your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and need to attend classes near Newberry FL in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online school, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes because of work, illness or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Newberry FL?
Newberry is a city located on the southwest side of Alachua County, Florida, United States. The population was 4,950 at the 2010 census and its population has grown since 1990. The University of Florida estimates the city's population at 5,946 as of September 2016. Much of the city borders the neighboring Gilchrist County to the west. The current mayor is Jordan Marlowe.
Developed as a mining and railroad town in the late 19th century, since the mid-20th century it has developed new commodity crops for agriculture. In 1984 Freddie Warmack was elected as its first black mayor, gaining 60% of the white vote. The city's historic district is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Newberry developed as a mining town after phosphate was discovered in the western part of Alachua County in the 1880s. In 1893, the Savannah, Florida, and Western Railway was extended southward from High Springs to Newberry, leading to its development as a railroad town and trading center. A post office established in March 1894 was named Newton, but changed to Newberry in August of that year.
In this period, racial violence against blacks rose in Alachua County, where lynchings took place to enforce white supremacy. A total of 21 people, 19 of them black, were lynched in the county between 1891 and 1926.
Enroll in the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Newberry FL
Picking the right dental hygienist program is important if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are several options offered to acquire your education and it takes a fairly short period of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these schools generally receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists normally require approximately two years of studies prior to entering 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 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 Newberry FL.
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