How to Select a Dental Hygienist Program near Kings Mountain North Carolina
Selecting the right dental hygienist school near Kings Mountain NC is an important initial step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must assess and compare your school options. There is far more to performing your due diligence than selecting the school with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the college that is nearest to your home. There are other crucial factors to consider as well, including the college’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 two to three years to complete. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will talk about all of these issues and additional questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist colleges you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs available.
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When comparing the job of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the most significant difference is probably that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Kings Mountain NC dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are typically the initial person a patient sees when called from the waiting area. They examine every patient’s gums and teeth and report their results to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s duties can include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Instructing patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
To qualify for licensing in almost 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 licensing examinations. After they have completed these requirements they are deemed fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
Due to the increased responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Kings Mountain NC dental practices are normally required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can require anywhere from two to as long as three 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 aspect to the training as well| Some programs also offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Dental Hygienist Online Programs
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist program can be a viable option for receiving your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be completely online, since there will be a clinical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be accessible via your desktop computer in the convenience of your Kings Mountain NC 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 costs than their traditional competitors. And supplementary expenses such as for 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 clinical and online training, everything necessary to get the appropriate education is provided. If you have the discipline for this mode of learning, you might find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online college is the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Cover With Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Kings Mountain NC, you can start 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 cost and the location of the colleges. Maybe they search for some online options also. Although these are relevant initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you should ask of the schools you are reviewing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and final selection of the right dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are a number of good reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are intending to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a requirement in nearly all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the training you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Kings Mountain NC employers frequently prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, frequently they are not available for non-accredited programs.
Is Plenty of Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a vital part of any dental training program. This is true for the online school options as well. Many dental hygienist schools have partnerships with area dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the college you select offers adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately want to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the program you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Kings Mountain NC dental office that focuses on dental care for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental schools you are exploring have an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the best method 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 form professional relationships in the Kings Mountain NC dentistry community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist colleges require help obtaining their first job. Check if the colleges you are reviewing have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Kings Mountain NC dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Smaller? Ask the programs you are evaluating how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally provide a more intimate setting for training where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, bigger classes can be impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If feasible, find out if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the Kings Mountain NC dental hygienist college that you are most interested in in order to experience first hand the level of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can differ in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the schools and if they are public or private also have an impact. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant costs which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when comparing the cost of schools, remember to include all of the costs related to your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Kings Mountain NC area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist college, you must make sure that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while receiving your education and must attend classes near Kings Mountain NC in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online program, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Kings Mountain NC?
Kings Mountain, North Carolina
Kings Mountain is a small suburban city within the Charlotte metropolitan area in Cleveland and Gaston counties, North Carolina, United States. Most of the city is in Cleveland County, with a small eastern portion in Gaston County. The population was 10,296 at the 2010 census. During the Revolutionary War, Patriot militia defeated Loyalist militia in the Battle of Kings Mountain. Liberty Mountain, a play performed at the local theater, tells all about the battle. The downtown area is home to the museum and police station.
Originally the settlement was called White Plains, but when the city was incorporated on October 16, 1874, and the name was changed. It was decided that "Kings Mountain" would be a more appropriate name since the community was close to the historic 1780 Battle of Kings Mountain in York County, South Carolina, a turning point in the American Revolutionary War.
The Central School Historic District, King Street Overhead Bridge, Margrace Mill Village Historic District, Jacob S. Mauney Memorial Library and Teacher's Home, Southern Railway Company Overhead Bridge, and West End Historic District are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Kings Mountain is located at 35°14′39″N 81°20′33″W / 35.24417°N 81.34250°W / 35.24417; -81.34250 (35.244105, -81.342544). It lies 30 miles (48 km) west of Charlotte along Interstate 85. Gaffney, South Carolina, is 21 miles (34 km) to the southwest along I-85.
Enroll in the Ideal Dental Hygienist Program near Kings Mountain NC
Choosing the right dental hygienist program is essential if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are several options offered to acquire your education and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can obtain your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these schools normally earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require roughly 2 years of studies before they enter the job market. When earning a degree you can elect to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you elect to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be better prepared to make the right selection. And as a result, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Kings Mountain NC.
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