How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist College near Donalsonville Georgia
Picking the right dental hygienist school near Donalsonville GA is an important initial step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must examine and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than choosing the training with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the program that is closest to your residence. There are other significant factors to take into account as well, including the school’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 two to three years to complete. Naturally with the longer training of a hygienist comes more cost. 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 Job of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the role of a dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the biggest difference is probably that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Donalsonville GA practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are frequently the first person a patient encounters when called from the waiting room. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and report their findings to the dentists. They may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties can include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Teaching patients about oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in almost 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 licensure exams. After 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
Due to the increased responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Donalsonville GA dental offices 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 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 practical aspect to the training as well| Some programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Online Dental Hygienist Schools
Selecting an online dental hygienist college might be a great option for getting your education. Just remember that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available via your desktop computer in the convenience of your Donalsonville GA home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while going to college, online dental classes make education much more obtainable. Many may even have lower tuition costs than their on-campus competitors. And added expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced also. The practical training can usually be performed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything necessary to obtain the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this mode of education, you may find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist college is the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Dental Hygienist Colleges
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Donalsonville GA, you can begin the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many potential students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Perhaps they look for some online options also. Even though these may be significant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you should address to the schools you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are a number of good reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are going to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in nearly 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 ensure that the instruction you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Donalsonville GA employers frequently desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, frequently they are not available for non-accredited programs.
Is Adequate Clinical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is a vital component of any dental training program. This is true for the online college options also. A number of dental hygienist programs have partnerships with regional dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only important that the school you choose provides adequate clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. For example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the school you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Donalsonville GA dental office that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental programs you are evaluating have internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the best method to receive hands-on, practical 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 develop working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Many graduating students of dental hygienist programs need help getting their first job. Check if the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Colleges with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Donalsonville GA dental profession in addition to large networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Smaller? Ask the schools you are looking at how big on average their classes are. The smaller classes tend to provide a more personal atmosphere for training where students have greater access to the instructors. Conversely, large classes tend to be impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If practical, ask if you can monitor a few classes at the Donalsonville GA dental hygienist college that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Entire Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can differ in cost based on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other variables, such as the reputations of the colleges and whether they are public or private also come into play. But along with the tuition there are other significant expenses 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 comparing the cost of programs, remember to add all of the costs related to your education. The majority of colleges have financial assistance offices, so make sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Donalsonville GA area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you need to make sure that the assistant or hygienist program furnishes classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while receiving your education and need to go to classes near Donalsonville GA in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online college, you will still have to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up practice is if you should have to miss any classes due to illness, work or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Donalsonville GA?
Donalsonville was originally part of Decatur County. It is named after John Ernest Donalson (1846–1920), also known as Jonathan or John E. Donalson, a prominent businessman of the area. Donalson built the first lumber mill in Donalsonville, Donalson Lumber Company. He also built homes and a commissary for the workers of the mill. The lumber company paved the way for the town's growth.
Donalsonville was first chartered as a town in Georgia on December 8, 1897. When Seminole County was formed in January 1920, Donalsonville was named as its county seat. By August 1922, the Town of Donalsonville became known as the City of Donalsonville, with the charter passing on August 19, 1922.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.0 square miles (10 km2), of which 4.0 square miles (10 km2) is land and 0.25% is water. The city is located 20 minutes north of Lake Seminole, 62 miles (100 km) south of Albany, 36 miles (58 km) east of Dothan, Alabama and 107 miles (172 km) west of Valdosta.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 2,650 people residing in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 61.4% Black, 34.1% White, 0.0% Native American, 0.9% Asian, 0.3% from some other race and 1.2% from two or more races. 2.1% were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Select the Ideal Dental Hygienist School near Donalsonville GA
Picking the ideal dental hygienist course is essential 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 alternatives available to receive your training and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can receive your formal training through dental programs at junior colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these programs normally earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require approximately 2 years of studies prior to entering the job market. When obtaining a degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you decide to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the best choice. And as a result, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Donalsonville GA.
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