How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist Program near Hayward California
Selecting the right dental hygienist college near Hayward CA is an essential first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you need to evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than selecting the program with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your residence. There are other crucial issues to consider also, such as the college’s reputation and accreditation. Dental hygienists generally earn an Associate Degree, as compared to a certificate usually earned by assistants, and can take anywhere from two to three years to complete. Obviously with the more extensive training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these factors and additional questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist colleges you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs available.
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the duties 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 Hayward CA practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on an individual basis. They are frequently the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and present their results to the dentists. They also may perform basic procedures. Based 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 hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- 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 in addition to passing any state licensing examinations. Once they have fulfilled 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
As a result of the additional responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Hayward CA dental practices are generally 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 finish and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly 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 component to the training as well| Many programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Online Dental Hygienist Training
Choosing an online dental hygienist school might be a good option for getting your education. Just keep in mind that the program will not be totally online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be provided via your desktop computer in the convenience of your Hayward CA home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while attending school, online dental classes make education much more accessible. Many may even offer lower tuition rates than their on-campus counterparts. And added expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened also. The practical training can usually be performed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything necessary to obtain the appropriate education is provided. If you have the dedication for this mode of education, you may find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist school is the best option for you.
Subjects to Ask Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Hayward CA, you can begin the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we covered at the start of this article, many students begin by looking at the location and the cost of the schools. Perhaps they search for some online options also. Even though these are significant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the schools you are reviewing in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have provided a list of questions to assist you with your due diligence and final selection of the right dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are several valid reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental hygienist college. 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 Examination, your dental college 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. Hayward CA employers often prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, frequently they are not obtainable for non-accredited colleges.
Is Adequate Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a vital part of any dental training program. This applies for the online school options as well. Many dental hygienist schools have partnerships with area dental offices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you enroll in 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, confirm that the college you select offers clinical rotation in a local Hayward CA dental practice that specializes in dental treatment for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Ask if the dental schools you are evaluating have internship programs. Internships are probably the best way to get hands-on, clinical experience in a professional 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 Hayward CA dentistry community. And they are attractive on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Provided? Most graduating students of dental hygienist colleges need help getting their first job. Check if the colleges 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 Hayward CA dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are Classrooms Small? Ask the colleges you are looking at how big on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to provide a more personal setting for training where students have greater access to the teachers. Conversely, large classes often are impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If practical, find out if you can monitor a couple of classes at the Hayward CA dental hygienist school that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between instructors and students before making a commitment.
What is the Total Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can fluctuate in cost dependent 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 significant 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 examining the cost of programs, don’t forget to add all of the costs associated with your education. Most colleges have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Hayward CA area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to confirm that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while acquiring your education and need to attend classes near Hayward CA at nights or on weekends. And even if you choose an online college, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up practice is if you should need to miss any classes because of work, illness or family responsibilities.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Hayward CA?
Hayward (/ˈheɪwərd/; formerly Haywards, Haywards Station, and Haywood) is a city located in Alameda County, California in the East Bay subregion of the San Francisco Bay Area. With a 2014 population of 149,392, Hayward is the sixth largest city in the Bay Area and the third largest in Alameda County. Hayward was ranked as the 37th most populous municipality in California. It is included in the San Francisco–Oakland–Fremont Metropolitan Statistical Area by the US Census. It is located primarily between Castro Valley and Union City, and lies at the eastern terminus of the San Mateo–Hayward Bridge. The city was devastated early in its history by the 1868 Hayward earthquake. From the early 20th century until the beginning of the 1980s, Hayward's economy was dominated by its now defunct food canning and salt production industries.
In the 19th century, the land that is now Hayward became part of Rancho San Lorenzo, a Spanish land grant to Guillermo Castro, in 1841. The site of his home was on the former El Camino Viejo, or Castro Street (now Mission Boulevard) between C and D Streets, but the structure was severely damaged in the 1868 Hayward earthquake, with the Hayward Fault running directly under its location. Most of the city's structures were destroyed in the earthquake, the last major earthquake on the fault. In 1930, that site was chosen for the construction of the City Hall, which served the city until 1969.
William Dutton Hayward arrived during the gold rush and "squatted" as he began to build a house next to the creek at the site of the old Polamares School. Guillermo Castro's Vaqueros came by one day and told Hayward to get off of Castro's property. William did leave, but went to Guillermo Castro directly and asked to buy a piece of his land. Castro sold him the area of what was east of Castro Street, now Mission Blvd and north side of A Street. William Hayward built a grand hotel on the property. He and his wife ran the hotel, which eventually burned to the ground around 1916.
Hayward was originally known as "Hayward's", then as "Haywood", later as "Haywards", and eventually as "Hayward". There is some disagreement as to how it was named. Most historians believe it was named for William Dutton Hayward, who opened a hotel there in 1852. The U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System states the city was named after Alvinza Hayward, a millionaire from the California Gold Rush. Regardless of which Hayward the area was named for, the name was changed to "Haywood" when the post office was first established in 1860.
Find the Right Dental Hygienist School near Hayward CA
Selecting the right dental hygienist program is important if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are many alternatives offered to receive your education and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these programs typically receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require approximately 2 years of studies before they enter the job market. When earning 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 ideal choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Hayward CA.
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