How to Select a Dental Hygienist Training Program near Knightdale North Carolina
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist program near Knightdale NC is an important initial step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you must analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than selecting the program with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your home. There are other important factors to take into account also, such as the program’s reputation and accreditation. 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 cost. We will explore all of these considerations and additional questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist programs you are reviewing 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 duties 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 in support of the Knightdale NC dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are usually the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and report their results to the dentists. They may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Instructing patients about oral care
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
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 Exam as well as any state licensing exams. When they have completed these requirements they are considered fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
As a result of the added responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Knightdale NC dental offices are normally 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 finish and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly 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| Some programs also sponsor internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Colleges
Selecting an online dental hygienist college might be a viable option for receiving your education. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be accessible by means of your personal computer in the convenience of your Knightdale NC home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while going to college, online dental programs make education a lot more obtainable. Some may even have lower tuition rates than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened also. The practical training can usually be performed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to get the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this style of learning, you might find that enrolling in an dental hygienist online college is the right option for you.
Points to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Knightdale NC, you can begin the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many students start by looking at the cost and the location of the schools. Perhaps they look for some online alternatives also. Even though these may be relevant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the programs you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have included a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the right dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually all states. In order 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 receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Knightdale NC employers typically prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And last, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is an essential part of every dental training program. This is true for the online college options also. A number of dental hygienist colleges have associations with regional dental practices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the program you enroll in offers adequate 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, confirm that the program you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Knightdale NC dental practice that specializes in dental services for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental colleges you are exploring sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal way to receive 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 Provided? Most students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs need help getting their first job. Find out if the colleges you are considering have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Knightdale NC dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classes Small? Ask the programs you are reviewing how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more personal setting for learning where students have greater access to the instructors. Conversely, large classes often are impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If feasible, ask if you can sit in on a few classes at the Knightdale NC dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the level of interaction between teachers and students before enrolling.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene training can differ in cost based on the duration of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other variables, such as the reputations of the colleges and if they are public or private also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other substantial 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 comparing the cost of colleges, remember to include all of the costs related to your education. The majority of colleges have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Knightdale NC area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you need to confirm that the assistant or hygienist program furnishes classes that fit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while getting your education and have to go to classes near Knightdale NC at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up policy is if you should need to miss any classes due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Knightdale NC?
Knightdale, North Carolina
Knightdale is a town in Wake County, North Carolina, United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 11,401. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the town's population to be 13,291 as of July 1, 2013. Knightdale's population grew 10.4% from 2010-2012, making it the second fastest-growing community in the Research Triangle region for that time period.
With the population boom experienced in the North Carolina Research Triangle area in the past two decades, Knightdale has become a part of the metro region and a suburb of Raleigh, bordering that city at the Neuse River. The population of the Raleigh-Durham-Cary Combined Statistical Area (CSA) was 1,749,525 as of the 2010 census, with the Raleigh-Cary Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) portion containing 1,130,490 residents. At least one media outlet predicts the three-county Research Triangle region will be the fastest-growing metro region in the nation between 2005 and 2025.
In 1700, the Lords Proprietor of the Carolina Colony hired John Lawson to explore the area. He began his 1,000-mile (1,600 km) trek near present-day Charleston, South Carolina, and according to his diary, passed through the area sometime in February 1701. He wrote about a meeting with the Tuscarora Native American tribe on the banks of the Neuse River, and with the help of an interpreter, Lawson made peace with the Tuscarora.
After receiving the report from Lawson, the King of England began to apportion these lands to willing settlers. In 1730, John Hinton settled in what would one day be called Knightdale in an area near the Neuse River, not far from where Hodge Road and Old Faison Road now intersect.
Pick the Best Dental Hygienist College near Knightdale NC
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist course is essential if you intend 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 obtain 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 junior colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these programs usually earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require approximately two years of studies prior to entering the work force. When obtaining 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 as a result, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Knightdale NC.
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