How to Choose a Dental Hygienist School near Florence Kentucky
Selecting the right dental hygienist college near Florence KY is an essential first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you need to examine and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than selecting the school with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the program that is nearest to your home. There are other important issues to take into account 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 cost. We will discuss all of these concerns and additional questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist programs you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.
The Role of Dental Hygienists
When contrasting the duties of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the most significant difference is probably that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Florence KY dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are frequently the first person a patient sees when called from the waiting area. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and report their findings to the dentists. They may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties can include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Instructing patients regarding oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
To qualify for licensing 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 Examination as well as any state licensing examinations. Once 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 Training Options
Due to the additional responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Florence KY dental offices are often required to hold an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can require anywhere from two to as long as three years to complete and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly every state. They are offered in trade and technical schools as well as community colleges. 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.
Online Dental Hygienist Classes
Selecting an online dental hygienist program may be a good option for obtaining your training. Just remember that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be provided via your personal computer in the convenience of your Florence KY home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while going to school, online dental classes make education a lot more obtainable. Some may even offer lower tuition costs than their traditional competitors. And supplementary expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced also. The clinical training can usually be performed 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 provided. If you have the discipline for this style of learning, you might find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online program is the right option for you.
Points to Cover With Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Florence KY, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students begin by looking at the location and the cost of the colleges. Possibly they look for some online options as well. Even though these are relevant initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you should ask of the programs you are looking at in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have included a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and final selection of the best dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are several good reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a condition in almost 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 guarantee that the instruction you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Florence KY employers typically prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not available for non-accredited colleges.
Is Plenty of Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is an important portion of any dental training program. This holds true for the online college options as well. Many dental hygienist programs have partnerships with regional dental offices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the college you enroll in provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the school you select offers clinical rotation in a local Florence KY dental practice that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental colleges you are looking at have an internship program. Internships are probably the best way to get hands-on, practical 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 create professional relationships in the Florence KY dentistry community. And they are attractive on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Furnished? Many graduating students of dental hygienist schools need help obtaining their first job. Ask if the programs you are considering have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Florence KY dental profession in addition to large networks of contacts where they can position their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Check with the programs you are looking at how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes usually provide a more personal atmosphere for training where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, bigger classes often are impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If practical, ask if you can monitor a few classes at the Florence KY dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward in order to experience first hand the level of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can vary in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other factors, for instance the reputations of the colleges and whether they are public or private also have an impact. But besides the tuition there are other substantial 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 examining the cost of colleges, remember to include all of the expenses associated with your education. The majority of colleges have financial assistance departments, so be sure to find out what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Florence KY area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you must verify that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while acquiring your education and have to go to classes near Florence KY at nights or on weekends. And even if you choose an online school, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes because of work, illness or family responsibilities.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Florence KY?
The Florence area was originally known as Crossroads, because of the convergence of several roads from Burlington and Union at Ridge Road (now U.S. 25). By 1821, the area was known as Maddentown for Thomas Madden, a Covington attorney who owned a farm on the Burlington Pike. When Madden moved away, the area became known as Connersville in 1828 for Jacob Conner, a settler who assumed responsibility for the growing town. The town was finally renamed to Florence because there was another Connersville in Harrison County. The name presumably is for Florence, Italy, but the specific etymology is unclear. It was incorporated on January 27, 1830, and grew quickly after the completion of the Covington-Lexington Turnpike in 1836.
Florence is located in eastern Boone County at 38°59′36″N 84°38′33″W / 38.99333°N 84.64250°W / 38.99333; -84.64250 (38.993225, -84.642602). U.S. Routes 25, 42, and 127 pass through the center of Florence, leading northeast in a concurrency 11 miles (18 km) to downtown Cincinnati. Interstates 75 and 71 pass through the western part of Florence, with access from exits 178 through 182.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 10.3 square miles (26.8 km2), of which 10.3 square miles (26.7 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km2), or 0.43%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 23,551 people, 9,640 households, and 6,073 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,385.6 per square mile (921.1/km2). There were 10,322 housing units at an average density of 1,045.6 per square mile (403.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 92.44% White, 2.67% African American, 0.26% Native American, 1.50% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 1.58% from other races, and 1.49% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.80% of the population.
Select the Ideal Dental Hygienist Program near Florence KY
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist program is important if you intend to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are several options available to obtain your training and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal education through dental programs at junior colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these programs generally earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require approximately two years of studies before they enter the work force. When pursuing a degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you decide to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be in a better position to make the right choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Florence KY.
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