How to Pick a Dental Hygienist College near Dighton Kansas
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist college near Dighton KS is an essential first 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 selecting the program with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the program that is nearest to your home. There are other crucial factors to consider as well, for instance 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. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these considerations and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist colleges you are evaluating 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 hygienist to that of an assistant, the most significant difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Dighton KS dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are often the initial person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and report their results to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Teaching patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in nearly all states, dental hygienists must have graduated from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They also must pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam as well as any state licensure exams. When they have fulfilled these requirements they are considered fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
Due to the added responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Dighton KS dental offices are usually 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 complete and must be accredited by the CDA in almost 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| A number of programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Hygienist Online Training
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist school can be a viable alternative for getting your training. Just remember that the program will not be completely online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be accessible via your personal computer in the comfort of your Dighton KS home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while attending school, online dental programs make education much more obtainable. Many may even have lower tuition rates than their traditional competitors. And added expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced also. The clinical training can typically be performed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything necessary to obtain the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the dedication for this mode of learning, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online school is the right choice for you.
Topics to Cover With Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Dighton KS, you can start the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many potential students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Perhaps they search for some online options as well. Although these may be relevant initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you should address to the colleges you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have furnished a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are several important reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in virtually all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental school 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. Dighton KS employers often prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges.
Is Adequate Practical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an important component of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. Many dental hygienist colleges have relationships with area dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the program you select offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately want to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, check that the program you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Dighton KS dental practice that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental schools you are exploring have internship programs. Internships are probably the most effective 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 develop working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Most graduating students of dental hygienist programs require help landing their first job. Find out if the programs you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Dighton KS dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Find out from the schools you are reviewing how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes usually provide a more intimate environment for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, larger classes tend to be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If feasible, find out if you can monitor a few classes at the Dighton KS dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward in order to witness first hand the level of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can fluctuate in cost dependent on the length of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for example the reputations of the colleges and if they are public or private also come into play. But besides the tuition there are other significant 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 comparing the cost of schools, don’t forget to add all of the costs related to your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to check out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Dighton KS area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you must confirm that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while receiving your education and have to attend classes near Dighton KS in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online college, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up procedure is if you should have to miss any classes due to work, illness or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Dighton KS?
The Homestead Act of 1862 offered 160 acres (0.65 km2) of land in the American West, previously owned by railroads, to homesteaders who could live on the land for five years. Drawn west by the promise of free, fertile land, pioneer settlers arrived in Kansas starting in 1869. In 1879, W.A. Watson arrived at the town site, and a post office was established. In 1885, there were three houses and seven voters in town. Lane County became a county in 1886, with Dighton as its county seat. By 1900, the population was 194, and by 1910 it had grown to 370, and the town had banks; a flour mill; a grain elevator; two newspapers; public schools; a hotel; merchants; Baptist, Catholic, and Methodist churches; telegraph service; a band and telephones.
Life was difficult for the early pioneers, who built houses made of sod and found that the land was quite dry, and not as fertile as they had been led to believe. A song written by Frank Baker, the Lane County Bachelor, became a popular folk song throughout the western United States.
On May 23, 1928, the Fleagle Gang arrived in Dighton after robbing the First National Bank of Lamar, Colorado. Needing medical attention, they kidnapped local doctor W.W. Weinenger, and later shot him and dumped his body into a ravine.
The courtroom mural, "The First House of Lane County," by Mary Alice Bosley, was featured in Kansas Murals: A Traveler's Guide, by Jost and Loewenstein (). The canvas work, painted in 1961 as a background for the pageant at the Lane County Fair, was then installed in the courthouse, where it still remains.
Select the Ideal Dental Hygienist School near Dighton KS
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist course is essential if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are many alternatives offered to receive your education and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can receive your formal education through dental programs at junior colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools usually receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists normally require about 2 years of studies before they enter the work force. When earning a degree you can choose to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training you decide to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be in a better position to make the ideal selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Dighton KS.
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