How to Choose a Dental Hygienist College near Glendale California
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist college near Glendale CA is an essential first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But prior to making 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 lowest tuition or enrolling in the program that is closest to your residence. There are other significant factors to take into account also, such as the school’s accreditation and reputation. Dental hygienists generally 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 prolonged training of a hygienist comes more cost. We will explore all of these considerations and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist colleges you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s review the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.
The Job of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the role of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the main difference is probably that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Glendale CA dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are frequently 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 perform basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Teaching patients about oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
To qualify for licensing in almost all states, dental hygienists must have graduated 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. Once 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 additional responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Glendale CA dental practices are usually 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 complete 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| A number of programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Hygienist Online Classes
Selecting an online dental hygienist school can be a viable option for receiving your training. Just keep in mind that the program will not be completely online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be provided via your personal computer in the comfort of your Glendale CA home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental programs make education far more accessible. Many may even offer lower tuition rates than their on-campus competitors. And supplementary expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced as well. The practical training can often be performed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to get the appropriate education is provided. If you have the discipline for this mode of education, you may find that attending an dental hygienist online college is the right option for you.
What to Ask Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Glendale CA, you can start the process of comparing programs and schools. As we discussed at the start of this article, many students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the schools. Maybe they search for some online options as well. Although these may be relevant initial factors to consider, there are a few additional questions that you should ask of the programs you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, 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 School Accredited? There are many important reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a prerequisite in almost 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 guarantee that the instruction you receive is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Glendale CA employers often desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not available for non-accredited schools.
Is Adequate Clinical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is a necessary component of any dental training program. This is true for the online school options also. Most dental hygienist colleges have associations with regional dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the college you enroll in provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you subsequently want to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the college you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Glendale CA dental practice that specializes in dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental schools you are evaluating have an internship program. Internships are probably the most effective means to obtain hands-on, clinical experience in a real dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist schools require assistance obtaining their first job. Ask if the programs you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Glendale CA dental community in addition to large networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classes Smaller? Check with the programs you are evaluating how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes usually offer a more intimate atmosphere for learning where students have greater access to the instructors. On the other hand, larger classes can be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If practical, find out if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the Glendale CA dental hygienist college that you are most interested in so that you can witness first hand the amount of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can differ in cost based on the length of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other variables, such as the reputations of the colleges and whether they are public or private also have an impact. But along with the tuition there are other significant 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, remember to include all of the expenses associated with your education. The majority of colleges have financial assistance offices, so make sure to find out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Glendale CA area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to confirm that the assistant or hygienist program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while acquiring your education and must go to classes near Glendale CA in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Glendale CA?
Glendale /ˈɡlɛndeɪl/ is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States. Its estimated 2014 population was 200,167, making it the third largest city in Los Angeles County and the 23rd-largest city in California. It is located about 8 miles (13 km) north of downtown Los Angeles.
Glendale lies in the southeastern end of the San Fernando Valley, bisected by the Verdugo Mountains, and is a suburb in the Greater Los Angeles Area. The city is bordered to the northwest by the Sun Valley and Tujunga neighborhoods of Los Angeles; to the northeast by La Cañada Flintridge and the unincorporated area of La Crescenta; to the west by Burbank and Griffith Park; to the east by Eagle Rock and Pasadena; to the south by the Atwater Village neighborhood of Los Angeles; and to the southeast by Glassell Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. The Golden State, Ventura, Glendale, and Foothill freeways run through the city.
Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery contains the remains of many noted celebrities and local residents. Grand Central Airport was the departure point for the first commercial west-to-east transcontinental flight flown by Charles Lindbergh.
In 1798, José María Verdugo, a corporal in the Spanish army from Baja California, received the Rancho San Rafael from Governor Diego de Borica, formalizing his possession and use of land on which he had been grazing livestock and farming since 1784. Rancho San Rafael was a Spanish concession, of which 25 were made in California. Unlike the later Mexican land grants, the concessions were similar to grazing permits, with the title remaining with the Spanish crown.
Enroll in the Best Dental Hygienist College near Glendale CA
Selecting the right dental hygienist program is imperative if you want to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are a number of options available to receive your education and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can receive your formal education through dental programs at junior colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these schools generally receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists generally require approximately 2 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 elect to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be better prepared to make the best choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Glendale CA.
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