How to Pick a Dental Hygienist Training Program near Bluffton South Carolina
Picking the right dental hygienist school near Bluffton SC is an essential first step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you must evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than picking the school with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the college that is closest to your home. There are other crucial factors to take into account as well, for instance the college’s reputation and accreditation. 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 complete. Naturally with the more extensive training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will explore all of these factors and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist schools you are evaluating later in this article. But first, let’s review the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Job of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the role of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the most significant difference is probably that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and assists the Bluffton SC practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the first person a patient encounters when called from the waiting room. They examine each 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 responsibilities may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Educating patients regarding oral care
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
To qualify for licensing in nearly all states, dental hygienists must have graduated from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They must also pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination as well as any state licensing examinations. When they have fulfilled 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 additional responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Bluffton SC dental practices are usually required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can require anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to complete and must be accredited by the CDA in virtually 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| A number of programs also offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Colleges
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist school may be a good alternative for obtaining your education. Just keep in mind that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be accessible by means of your desktop computer in the convenience of your Bluffton SC home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while attending school, online dental classes make education far more accessible. Many may even offer lower tuition rates than their traditional competitors. And supplementary expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced also. The clinical training can usually be performed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything required to receive the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this style of learning, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online college is the right option for you.
Topics to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Bluffton SC, you can begin the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Possibly they search for some online alternatives also. Even though these are important initial factors to consider, there are several additional questions that you need to ask of the schools you are comparing in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in almost all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Bluffton SC employers typically desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited colleges. And last, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not provided for non-accredited programs.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an essential component of every dental training program. This holds true for the online college options as well. Many dental hygienist colleges have associations with area dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the college you enroll in provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the school you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Bluffton SC dental office that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are considering sponsor internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the best method to obtain hands-on, clinical 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 develop professional relationships in the Bluffton SC dentistry community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist schools need assistance landing their first job. Check if the schools you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Bluffton SC dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are Classrooms Small? Check with the programs you are looking at how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally offer a more personal setting for training where students have increased access to the instructors. On the other hand, larger classes often are impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, find out if you can monitor a couple of classes at the Bluffton SC dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward in order to witness first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Entire Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can vary in cost based on the length of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the schools and whether they are private or public also have an impact. But besides the tuition there are other substantial costs which can add up. They can include costs 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 add all of the costs associated with your education. Most colleges have financial assistance departments, so make sure to check out what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Bluffton SC area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you must verify that the hygienist or assistant program offers classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while getting your education and have to go to classes near Bluffton SC 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 Bluffton SC?
Bluffton, South Carolina
Bluffton is a Lowcountry town in Beaufort County, South Carolina, United States. It is primarily located around U.S. Route 278, between Hilton Head Island and Interstate 95. The town's original one square mile area, now known as Old Town, is situated on a bluff along the May River. The population was counted by the 2010 census at 12,893, and was estimated to have swelled to 21,085 in 2017. Additionally, it is the fastest growing municipality in South Carolina with a population over 2,500, growing 882.7% between the 2000 and 2010 census. Bluffton is the fifth largest municipality in South Carolina by land area. The town is a primary city within the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort, SC Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Following the Tariff of 1842, Bluffton became a hotbed of separatist sentiment. In 1844 the Bluffton Movement, a protest against federal taxes, gave birth to the secession movement and led South Carolina to be the first state to leave the Union. In the antebellum period Bluffton became a popular location for wealthy merchants and plantation owners. During the Civil War two-thirds of the town was destroyed by fire during the Union's Bluffton Expedition on June 4, 1863.
During the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the area comprising southern Beaufort County was known as Granville County of St. Luke's Parish. The Yamasee people were invited to settle in the area by Lord Cardoss, leader of the nearby Scottish settlement in Beaufort. The Yamasee established ten towns with over 1,200 inhabitants in the area. In 1715, the Yamasee War broke out, and after several years of fighting, the Yamasee migrated to Florida, opening the "Indian Lands" to European settlement. In 1718, the Lords Proprietors carved the area into several new baronies, including the Devil's Elbow Barony that contained the future town of Bluffton. The first titled owner of the land was the Barbadian planter Sir John Colleton. Following the departure of the Yamasee people, colonists began building plantations in the Bluffton area in 1728. The Colletons prospered by growing cotton, corn and indigo.
Before his death in 1776, Sir John Colleton (grandson of the original owner) developed plantations near Victoria Bluff - Foot Point areas and later disposed of much of his barony, much of it bought by the Rose and Kirk families. These plantations were destroyed by the British under General Prévost in 1779. During the 18th century, much of the land south of the May River (now known as Palmetto Bluff) was covered with rice fields. Rice became a lucrative crop and a part of lowcountry culture until the early 20th century when it was disrupted by a series of devastating storms.
Choose the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Bluffton SC
Choosing the right dental hygienist program is important if you want to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if required in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are many options available to acquire your training and it takes a relatively 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 usually earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require approximately two years of studies before they enter the work force. When obtaining a degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you elect to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the appropriate choice. And as a result, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Bluffton SC.
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