Dental Hygienist Schools Near Me in Greenwood SC 29646

How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist College near Greenwood South Carolina

Greenwood SC dental hygienist with patientPicking the right dental hygienist college near Greenwood SC is an important initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you need to assess and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than picking the college with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the college that is nearest to your residence. There are other significant issues to consider also, for instance the college’s accreditation and reputation. 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 accomplish. Naturally with the prolonged training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will discuss all of these factors 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 provided.

The Duties of a Dental Hygienist

Greenwood SC pediatric dental hygienist with patientWhen comparing the role of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the biggest difference is probably that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and assists the Greenwood SC practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the initial person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and report their findings to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:

  • Removing stains, tartar and plaque
  • Administering fluoride treatments
  • Applying sealants and polishing teeth
  • Educating patients regarding oral care
  • 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 Examination as well as any state licensure examinations. When they have completed these requirements they are deemed fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.

Dental Hygienist Training Options

Due to the added responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Greenwood SC dental practices are generally required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can take anywhere from two to as long as three years to finish 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 component to the training as well| Some programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.

Dental Hygienist Online Training

attending dental hygienist school online in Greenwood SCSelecting an online dental hygienist college may be a viable alternative for obtaining your education. Just keep in mind that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available by means of your desktop computer in the comfort of your Greenwood SC home or anywhere else on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while going to school, online dental classes make education a lot more obtainable. Some may even have lower tuition rates than their on-campus counterparts. And added expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened also. The clinical training can often be completed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to get the appropriate education is provided. If you have the dedication for this method of learning, you may find that attending an online dental hygienist college is the ideal option for you.

Topics to Cover With Dental  Hygienist Schools

teeth cleaned by Greenwood SC dental hygienistNow that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Greenwood SC, you can begin the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many potential students begin by looking at the location and the cost of the colleges. Possibly they look for several online alternatives also. Although these are relevant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you need to ask of the programs you are reviewing in order to arrive at an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist college for you.

Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in virtually all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the education you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Greenwood SC employers often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not available for non-accredited programs.

Is Sufficient Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a necessary part of any dental training program. This applies for the online school options also. Many dental hygienist colleges have partnerships with regional dental practices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you select offers adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Greenwood SC dental practice that specializes in dental services for children.

Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental programs you are exploring have internship programs. Internships are probably the best means to get 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 build professional relationships in the Greenwood SC dentistry community. And they look good on resumes as well.

Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Many graduating students of dental hygienist colleges need assistance obtaining their first job. Find out if the programs you are considering have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Greenwood SC dental community as well as extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.

Are the Classrooms Small? Check with the programs you are reviewing how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes usually offer a more intimate setting for learning where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, larger classes tend to be impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can attend a couple of classes at the Greenwood SC dental hygienist school that you are most interested in in order to witness first hand the amount of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.

 What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can differ in cost depending on the length of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and if they are private or public also have an impact. But along with 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 analyzing the cost of colleges, don’t forget to add all of the expenses associated with your education. Most schools have financial assistance departments, so be sure to ask what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Greenwood SC area.

Are the Classes Accessible? 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 particularly true if you continue working while getting your education and have to go to classes near Greenwood SC at nights or on weekends. And even if you choose an online school, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.

Attending Dental Hygienist School near Greenwood SC?

Greenwood County, South Carolina

The rise of textile manufacturing in the New South altered the economy and society of the region. The first cotton mill in Greenwood opened in 1890 with 75 workers. When it nearly failed in 1908, James C. Self became president of Greenwood Cotton Mill and built one of the largest privately-held companies in the industry. Abney Mills, based in Greenwood, spread its production plants across the upstate.

Greenwood County was formed in 1897 from portions of Abbeville and Edgefield counties, which had originally been part of the old Ninety-Six District. It was named for its county seat, Greenwood. This had been named around 1824 after a plantation owned by John McGehee, an early resident. The area was developed largely for cotton plantations and was dependent on slave labor. It has continued to be agricultural in the 21st century.

The Great Depression altered the economy and landscape of Greenwood County. Farmers were impoverished, land values declined, local textile mills struggled to survive and to resist union efforts to organize the workers. After 1933, New Deal programs offered limited work relief for the unemployed. The largest New Deal project in the area was construction of Buzzard's Roost Dam on the Saluda River to impound Lake Greenwood and generate electricity in a county-owned power plant. Today the hydroelectric plant has been sold to Duke Power Company while the lake offers an array of recreational facilities.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 463 square miles (1,200 km2), of which 455 square miles (1,180 km2) is land and 8.2 square miles (21 km2) (1.8%) is water.[4] Greenwood County is in the Savannah River basin and the Saluda River basin.

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Select the Right Dental Hygienist College near Greenwood SC

Enrolling in the ideal dental hygienist program is essential if you want to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are many alternatives offered to acquire your training and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at junior colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these programs typically obtain an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require approximately two years of studies before they enter the job market. When earning a degree you can choose to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the ideal selection. And as a result, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Greenwood SC.

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    Cambridge Dental Associates
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    General Dentistry, Cosmetic Dentists, Endodontists
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    1302 Sc Hwy 72 Business, Greenwood, SC 29649