How to Pick a Dental Hygienist School near Johnsonville South Carolina
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist program near Johnsonville SC is an important first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than selecting the program with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the program that is closest to your residence. There are other crucial issues to consider as well, including 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 2 to 3 years to accomplish. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more cost. We will discuss all of these concerns and additional questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist programs you are analyzing later in this article. But first, let’s look at the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.
The Job of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the job of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the most significant difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Johnsonville SC dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are typically the initial person a patient sees when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and present their results to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Instructing patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
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 Examination in addition to passing any state licensing 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 Education Options
Because of the additional responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Johnsonville SC dental offices are often 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 community colleges as well as trade and technical schools. 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 sponsor internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Training
Selecting an online dental hygienist school can be a great option for getting your education. Just remember that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available via your desktop computer in the comfort of your Johnsonville SC home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while going to school, online dental programs make education much more accessible. Some may even charge lower tuition costs than their traditional counterparts. And supplementary expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced as well. The practical training can usually be completed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to get the proper education is provided. If you have the dedication for this style of education, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online school is the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Johnsonville SC, you can begin the process of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, a number of students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the schools. Maybe they search for several online alternatives also. Even though these may be relevant initial factors to consider, there are several additional questions that you need to ask of the programs you are looking at in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and final selection of the best dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are planning to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition 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 training you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Johnsonville SC employers typically desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not provided for non-accredited programs.
Is Enough Clinical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is an essential part of every dental training program. This is true for the online college options also. Most dental hygienist colleges have associations with area dental practices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you select provides sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently want to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the college you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Johnsonville SC dental practice that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are evaluating sponsor internship programs. Internships are probably the ideal means to obtain hands-on, practical experience in a professional dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students create working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs require help getting their first job. Find out if the colleges you are researching have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Johnsonville SC dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classes Smaller? Check with the programs you are looking at how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes tend to provide a more intimate environment for learning where students have greater access to the instructors. On the other hand, larger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If feasible, ask if you can monitor a few classes at the Johnsonville SC dental hygienist college that you are most interested in in order to witness first hand the degree of interaction between teachers and students before making a commitment.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can vary in cost based on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other variables, such as the reputations of the schools and whether 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 equipment, materials and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of colleges, remember to add all of the expenses related to your education. Most schools have financial assistance offices, so be sure to find out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Johnsonville SC area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist college, you must confirm that the assistant or hygienist program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and need to attend classes near Johnsonville SC at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online program, you will still need to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up policy is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Johnsonville SC?
Johnsonville, South Carolina
The city was founded in 1913 west of the spot of the former Witherspoon's Ferry on the Pee Dee River, where General Francis Marion received his commission for the Revolutionary War. Edward "Dwight" Carraway, Jr., a resident of Johnsonville from early childhood to the early 1980s, holds the record of South Carolina's youngest person ever elected to public office (1976–present). He was elected Alderman in June, 1976. Also, he was a classmate of Joseph Stevens "Steve" Dukes who has served as Mayor of Johnsonville since 2004.
In use during the American Revolution, Witherspoon's Ferry was the site where Francis Marion accepted command of the Williamsburg Militia in 1780. Ownership of the ferry lands passed from Robert to John Witherspoon in 1787. In 1802, John bequeathed the land to Aimwell Presbyterian Church.
Witherspoon's Ferry was a strategic ferry in the northeastern area of Williamsburg County, vested in John Witherspoon in 1801 and remaining in his charge until his death in 1815. According to the terms of John Witherspoon's will, the ferry was then vested in J. D. Witherspoon, executor, for a term of 14 years, "in trust for and having the sole benefit of the incorporated Presbyterian Church at Aimwell on the Pee Dee River."
In 1819, former South Carolina Governor David R. Williams, son-in-law of John Witherspoon, obtained these ferry lands. William J. Johnson, born 1787, succeeded J. D. Witherspoon at the ferry after purchasing the plantation in 1825 from the Witherspoon estate. The 1850 census of Williamsburg County shows William Johnson, a man of considerable wealth for his time and place, living just below where the American Legion stands in Johnsonville today.
Find the Right Dental Hygienist College near Johnsonville SC
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist program is crucial 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 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 training through dental programs at junior colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these programs generally receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require about two years of studies before they enter the work force. When earning a degree you can elect to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be in a better position to make the best choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Johnsonville SC.
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