How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist College near Oak Grove Kentucky
Selecting the right dental hygienist college near Oak Grove KY is an essential first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you need to evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to performing your due diligence than selecting the school with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the school that is nearest to your residence. There are other important issues to take into account as well, including the program’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. Naturally with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will talk about all of these concerns and additional questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist colleges you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s review the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs available.
The Job of Dental Hygienists
When contrasting the role of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the main difference is probably that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Oak Grove KY dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are frequently the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and present their results to the dentists. They may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Teaching patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
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 Exam as well as any state licensure exams. Once 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
Because of the increased responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Oak Grove KY dental practices are often 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 finish 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 practical component to the training as well| Many programs also offer internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Online Dental Hygienist Training Programs
Selecting an online dental hygienist program may be a great alternative for receiving your training. Just keep in mind that the program will not be totally online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be available by means of your desktop computer in the comfort of your Oak Grove KY home or anywhere else on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while going to school, online dental classes make education much more obtainable. Many may even have lower tuition fees than their traditional competitors. And additional expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced as well. The clinical training can usually be performed 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 provided. If you have the discipline for this style of learning, you might find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online school is the best choice for you.
Topics to Cover With Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Oak Grove KY, you can begin the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of potential students start by checking out the location and the cost of the schools. Possibly they search for several online alternatives as well. Although these may be important initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the schools you are reviewing in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have provided a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are several important reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are intending to become licensed or certified, 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 establish that the training you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Oak Grove KY employers frequently prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges.
Is Sufficient Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a vital component of every dental training program. This applies for the online college options as well. A number of dental hygienist schools have partnerships with area dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only important that the program you select provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately want to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the program you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Oak Grove KY dental practice that specializes in dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental programs you are evaluating have an internship program. Internships are probably the most effective method to obtain hands-on, clinical experience in a professional dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students create working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist colleges need help landing their first job. Check if the programs you are reviewing 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 Oak Grove KY dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classes Smaller? Ask the schools you are interested in how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally offer a more personal atmosphere for training where students have increased access to the teachers. Conversely, larger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If feasible, find out if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the Oak Grove KY dental hygienist college that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between students and teachers before enrolling.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene training can fluctuate in cost based on the duration of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, for example the reputations of the schools and whether they are private or public also come into play. 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 equipment, materials and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of programs, remember to add all of the expenses related to your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Oak Grove KY area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the assistant or hygienist program furnishes classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while getting your education and have to go to classes near Oak Grove KY in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online college, you will still be required to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up procedure is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Oak Grove KY?
Oak Grove, Kentucky
Oak Grove is a home rule-class city adjacent to the Fort Campbell army base in Christian County, Kentucky, in the United States. The population was 7,489 as of the 2010 U.S. Census. It is part of the Clarksville, Tennessee metropolitan area.
The first post office in Oak Grove was established in 1828. The community was named for oak trees near the original town site. The Clarksville Railroad was extended to Oak Grove in the 19th century.
Oak Grove is located in southeastern Christian County at 36°39′30″N 87°25′10″W / 36.65833°N 87.41944°W / 36.65833; -87.41944 (36.658374, -87.419565). Its southern border is the Tennessee state line, and it is bordered to the west by Fort Campbell. Hopkinsville, the Christian County seat, touches the northwest corner of Oak Grove along Fort Campbell Boulevard (U.S. Route 41 Alternate). Interstate 24 forms the northeast boundary of Oak Grove, with access from exit 86 (US 41 Alt.) and exit 89 (Kentucky Route 115). The city of Clarksville, Tennessee, is along the southern boundary of Oak Grove.
As of the census of 2000, there were 7,064 people, 2,529 households, and 1,820 families residing in the city. The population density was 685.4 people per square mile (264.5/km²). There were 2,912 housing units at an average density of 282.5 per square mile (109.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 61.72% White, 25.81% African American, 1.03% Native American or Alaska Native, 1.64% Asian, 0.51% Pacific Islander, 3.94% from other races, and 5.35% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 9.41% of the population.
Pick the Best Dental Hygienist Program near Oak Grove KY
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist course is imperative if you intend to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous options offered to acquire your training and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these programs usually obtain an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require about 2 years of studies prior to entering the work force. When obtaining a degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. 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 best selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Oak Grove KY.
More Great Cities in Kentucky
Business Results 1 - 10 of 9