How to Find the Right Dental Hygienist School near Adirondack New York
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist program near Adirondack NY is an essential initial 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 much more to doing your due diligence than picking the program with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the college that is closest to your home. There are other crucial issues to consider also, such as the program’s accreditation and reputation. Dental hygienists typically earn an Associate Degree, as compared to a certificate usually earned by assistants, and can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to accomplish. Naturally with the longer training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these issues and additional questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist programs you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s look at the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.
The Job of Dental Hygienists
When contrasting the duties of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the biggest difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Adirondack NY dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on an individual basis. They are often the initial person a patient encounters when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and present their findings to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Teaching patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in almost 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 completed these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
Due to the added responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Adirondack NY dental offices are usually 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 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 offer internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Hygienist Online Schools
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist college might be a great option for getting your training. Just remember that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available via your desktop computer in the convenience of your Adirondack NY home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental programs make education far more accessible. Some may even have lower tuition rates than their traditional competitors. And added expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced as well. The practical training can often be completed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to receive the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the dedication for this style of learning, you might find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist college is the best choice for you.
Points to Cover With Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Adirondack NY, you can start the process of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the start of this article, a number of potential students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Perhaps they search for some online options also. Even though these may be relevant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the programs you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have included a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and final selection of the right dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental college must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Adirondack NY employers frequently prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, often they are not obtainable for non-accredited programs.
Is Plenty of Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a vital component of every dental training program. This applies for the online school options also. A number of dental hygienist programs have partnerships with regional dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the school you choose offers adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the kind 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 Adirondack NY dental practice that specializes in dental treatment for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental colleges you are evaluating sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the most effective means to get hands-on, practical experience in a real dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Furnished? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs require assistance obtaining 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 are likely to have good reputations within the Adirondack NY dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classes Small? Ask the programs you are reviewing how big on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more personal setting for training where students have greater access to the teachers. Conversely, larger classes tend to be impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, find out if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the Adirondack NY dental hygienist school that you are most interested in in order to witness first hand the amount of interaction between teachers and students before enrolling.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene training can vary in cost depending on the duration of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, such as the reputations of the schools and if 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 expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when examining the cost of schools, remember to include all of the expenses associated with your education. The majority of colleges have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Adirondack NY area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist college, you need to verify that the assistant or hygienist program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you will be working while acquiring your education and have to attend classes near Adirondack NY in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online program, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up practice is if you should need to miss any classes due to work, illness or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Adirondack NY?
SUNY Adirondack is a public college serving Warren, Washington and northern Saratoga counties in New York State. SUNY Adirondack offers over 30 academic programs of study. It was founded in 1961 as Adirondack Community College (ACC). Four year degrees and master's degree programs became available with the opening of the SUNY at Plattsburgh Queensbury Branch on the SUNY Adirondack campus. It adopted its present name on March 1, 2010.
Warren Hall houses the business office, the financial aid office, payroll, office of the registrar, Barbara Green, the Interim Dean of Student affairs, the admissions office, and the office of accessibility services which provides assistance to students with disabilities.
Student Center houses the school bookstore, a cafeteria, a student lounge with big-screen TV, a pool table, and a number of couches, chairs, and tables for students to relax or sleep. It also houses the Student Activities office, which is home to the SUNY Adirondack Student Senate.
Eisenhart Hall is the oldest classroom building on campus. A major renovation was completed in April 2006, including a new geothermal heating system, as it used to have poor climate control. It now also houses a SUNY Plattsburgh lecture hall. Primarily social science classes are taught in this building: psychology, sociology, history, and political science, though other classes are taught here as well.
Choose the Best Dental Hygienist College near Adirondack NY
Enrolling in the ideal dental hygienist course is essential if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are several alternatives offered to receive your training 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, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools generally receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require approximately 2 years of studies prior to entering the job market. When earning a degree you can elect to attend classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training you elect to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the best selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Adirondack NY.
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