How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist Program near Georgetown Kentucky
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist program near Georgetown KY is an important initial step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you must assess and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than selecting the college with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the program that is closest to your home. There are other important issues to take into account also, including 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 finish. Obviously with the longer training of a hygienist comes more cost. We will cover all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist programs you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.
The Duties of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the job of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the most significant difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Georgetown KY 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 first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and present their results to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Teaching patients about oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
To qualify for licensing 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 in addition to passing any state licensing examinations. After they have fulfilled these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
Due to the additional responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Georgetown KY dental practices are generally required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can take 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 clinical component to the training as well| Many programs also offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Training Programs
Selecting an online dental hygienist college can be a great alternative for receiving your education. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be provided via your personal computer in the convenience of your Georgetown KY home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental classes make education a lot more obtainable. Some may even have lower tuition rates than their traditional competitors. And supplementary expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened as well. The clinical training can usually be completed at a community 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 style of education, you might find that attending an online dental hygienist school is the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Georgetown KY, you can start the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, many potential students start by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they look for some online alternatives as well. Even though these are important initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to ask of the programs you are reviewing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and final selection of the best dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a requirement 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 establish that the education you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Georgetown KY employers frequently desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not offered for non-accredited programs.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is a vital part of any dental training program. This is true for the online school options also. A number of dental hygienist programs have associations with area dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you enroll in offers sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the program you select offers clinical rotation in a local Georgetown KY dental practice that focuses on dental treatment for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental schools you are looking at have internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the best means to get hands-on, practical experience in a professional dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist colleges need help landing their first job. Find out if the programs you are considering have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Georgetown KY dental profession as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Small? Ask the schools you are interested in how large typically their classes are. The smaller classes usually provide a more intimate environment for training where students have greater access to the instructors. Conversely, bigger classes can be impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If practical, ask if you can sit in on a few classes at the Georgetown KY dental hygienist college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the amount of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.
What is the Entire Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can vary in cost based on the length of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and if they are private or public also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant costs which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of colleges, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. Most colleges have financial aid departments, so be sure to find out what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Georgetown KY area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while receiving your education and must attend classes near Georgetown KY at nights or on weekends. And even if you choose an online program, you will still need to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes due to work, illness or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Georgetown KY?
Georgetown College is a small, private, Christian liberal arts college in Georgetown, Kentucky. Chartered in 1829, Georgetown was the first Baptist college west of the Allegheny Mountains. With a student-to-faculty ratio of 13 to 1, the college offers undergraduate degrees and a Master of Arts in education.
Georgetown College traces its roots to Royal Springs Academy, a classical school founded by Baptist minister Elijah Craig in Georgetown in 1787. The institution was renamed Rittenhouse Academy in 1798 as part of a land grant agreement, and was led by Barton Stone, a co-founder of the Stone Campbell Movement, from 1816 to 1819. The academy declined and closed by 1829.
In 1829, the Kentucky General Assembly chartered the Kentucky Baptist Education Society with the purpose of establishing a Baptist college in the state. 24 trustees under the leadership of Silas Noel selected the town of Georgetown as the site for the new school. Georgetown was selected because the community agreed to raise $20,000 and to donate the assets of the recently closed Rittenhouse Academy.
Georgetown College overcame numerous difficulties in its early years. The first president hired for the college in 1829, William D. Staughton, died before assuming his duties. The second president, Rev. Joel Smith Bacon, stayed two years (1830–1832), fighting court cases to release funding for the college before leaving out of frustration. The funds were not released until 1836, when Benjamin Franklin Farnsworth became the third president hired. By then there was a power struggle in progress; Farnsworth had been hired by the Baptists to frustrate the Campbellites who were attempting to take control of the college. After the Campbellites founded a rival college only blocks away, Farnsworth found his attempts to build up Georgetown College stymied, and resigned in 1837.
Enroll in the Right Dental Hygienist College near Georgetown KY
Selecting the right dental hygienist course is important if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are numerous alternatives available to receive your education and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental hygienist. You can obtain your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these programs typically receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require approximately 2 years of studies before they enter the job market. 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 provided in this article you will be better prepared to make the best selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Georgetown KY.
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