How to Select a Dental Hygienist College near Martinsville New Jersey
Picking the ideal dental hygienist college near Martinsville NJ is an essential first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to performing your due diligence than selecting the training with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the program that is nearest to your home. There are other significant issues to take into account as well, for instance the program’s reputation and accreditation. Dental hygienists generally earn an Associate Degree, as compared to a certificate usually earned by assistants, and can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to accomplish. Obviously with the more extensive training of a hygienist comes more cost. We will talk about all of these considerations 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 explore the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Duties of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the job of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the main difference is probably that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Martinsville NJ practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are usually the initial person a patient encounters when called from the waiting room. 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 duties may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Teaching patients regarding oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
In order to be licensed in nearly all states, dental hygienists must graduate 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 licensure examinations. After they have completed 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
Because of the increased responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Martinsville NJ dental offices are usually 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 virtually 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 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 school can be a viable alternative for getting your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be accessible via your desktop computer in the comfort of your Martinsville NJ home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while going to college, online dental classes make education a lot more accessible. Some may even have lower tuition costs than their on-campus competitors. And added expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced also. The clinical training can typically be completed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything needed to receive the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this mode of education, you might find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online college is the ideal option for you.
What to Ask Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Martinsville NJ, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the start of this article, many potential students start by looking at the location and the cost of the schools. Perhaps they search for several online alternatives also. Although these are significant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you need to address to the programs you are looking at in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the right dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite 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 guarantee that the education you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Martinsville NJ employers often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not obtainable for non-accredited schools.
Is Plenty of Practical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is an essential component of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. Most dental hygienist schools have associations with regional dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the college you enroll in 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 choose offers clinical rotation in a local Martinsville NJ dental office that focuses on dental treatment for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental programs you are considering have an internship program. Internships are probably the best way to receive 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 form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Many graduating students of dental hygienist colleges need assistance landing their first job. Ask if the programs you are considering have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Martinsville NJ dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Check with the colleges you are looking at how large typically their classes are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more intimate setting for training where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, bigger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can attend a few classes at the Martinsville NJ dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the amount of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene training can differ in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the colleges and whether they are private or public 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 analyzing the cost of colleges, don’t forget to include all of the costs associated with your education. Most colleges have financial aid departments, so be sure to find out what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Martinsville NJ area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to verify that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while getting your education and must go to classes near Martinsville NJ at nights or on weekends. And even if you choose an online program, you will still be required to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Martinsville NJ?
Martinsville, New Jersey
Martinsville is an unincorporated community and census-designated place (CDP) located within Bridgewater Township, in Somerset County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the CDP's population was 11,980.
Martinsville is located in northeastern Bridgewater near Warren Township; the 08836 ZIP code also takes in the southern extension of Bernards Township. It is an affluent, predominantly residential area, though it does have its own commercial center along Washington Valley Road, and its own post office.
The Middlebrook encampment was a seasonal encampment of the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War near Martinsville that straddled the ridge of the First Watchung Mountains. Its position provided a natural fortress not only protecting the Continental Army, but also overlooking the plains towards New Brunswick where the British forces were stationed in 1777.
Tradition holds that it was at the Middlebrook encampment that the first official flag of the United States was unfurled, after a law to adopt a national flag had been passed by Congress on June 14, 1777. By special order of Congress, a Thirteen Star Flag is flown 24 hours a day at the Washington Camp Ground, part of the former Middlebrook encampment, in Bridgewater. Since 1889, the first hoisting of the flag is commemorated annually each July 4 with a changing of the flag, a reading of the United States Declaration of Independence, and the delivery of an historical address.
Pick the Best Dental Hygienist Program near Martinsville NJ
Picking the right dental hygienist program is crucial 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 options offered 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 community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these schools normally receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists normally require roughly 2 years of studies before they enter the work force. When pursuing a degree you can elect to attend classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training you choose to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be in a better position to make the appropriate choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Martinsville NJ.
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