How to Find the Right Dental Hygienist Training Program near Douglasville Georgia
Selecting the right dental hygienist college near Douglasville GA is an important initial step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you must assess and compare your school options. There is much more to doing your due diligence than selecting the school with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the school that is nearest to your home. There are other important factors to take into account as well, for instance the college’s accreditation and reputation. Dental hygienists typically 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 explore all of these factors and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist schools you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s review the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the duties 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 assists the Douglasville GA practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on an individual basis. They are usually the first person a patient encounters when called from the waiting area. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and report their findings to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Instructing patients about oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- 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 exams. When they have completed these requirements they are considered fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
Because of the increased responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Douglasville GA dental offices 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 finish and must be accredited by the CDA in almost 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 component to the training as well| Some programs also offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Programs
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist program can be a great option for obtaining your training. Just remember that the program will not be completely online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be available by means of your personal computer in the convenience of your Douglasville GA home or anywhere else on your tablet or laptop. For those working while going to college, online dental classes make education much more accessible. Some may even offer lower tuition costs than their on-campus competitors. And additional expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened also. The clinical training can typically be completed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything necessary to receive the appropriate education is provided. If you have the dedication for this method of education, you may find that attending an online dental hygienist school is the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Cover With Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Douglasville GA, you can begin the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the start of this article, a number of potential students begin by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Possibly they look for some online alternatives as well. Although these are relevant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you need to address to the colleges you are reviewing in order to make an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the best dental hygienist school for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are many important reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist school. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a requirement in almost all states. To qualify 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 training you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Douglasville GA employers frequently desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, often they are not available for non-accredited schools.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an important part of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. Most dental hygienist schools have associations with regional dental practices and clinics that furnish practical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you enroll in provides enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the college you select offers clinical rotation in a local Douglasville GA dental practice that specializes in dental care for children.
Are Internships Available? Verify if the dental schools you are evaluating sponsor an internship program. Internships are probably the ideal way to get 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 form working relationships in the professional dental community. And they look good on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Furnished? Many graduating students of dental hygienist programs require help getting their first job. Ask if the schools you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Douglasville GA dental community in addition to broad networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are the Classes Smaller? Check with the programs you are reviewing how large on average their classrooms are. The smaller classes usually provide a more intimate environment for training where students have greater access to the instructors. On the other hand, bigger classes often are impersonal and provide little one-on-one instruction. If practical, find out if you can attend a few classes at the Douglasville GA dental hygienist school that you are most interested in in order to witness first hand the level of interaction between students and instructors before enrolling.
What is the Overall Cost of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can vary in cost depending on the duration of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, for instance the reputations of the schools and whether they are private or public also come into play. 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 equipment, materials and supplies. So when comparing the cost of programs, don’t forget to add all of the costs associated with your education. The majority of schools have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Douglasville GA area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist school, you must verify that the assistant or hygienist program offers classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while getting your education and have to attend classes near Douglasville GA at nights or on weekends. And even if you choose an online program, you will still need to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up practice is if you should have to miss any classes because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Douglasville GA?
Located along a natural rise in the topography, Douglasville was originally known as "Skint Chestnut." The name was derived from a large tree used by Native Americans as a landmark; it was stripped of its bark so as to be more conspicuous.
Douglasville was founded in 1874 as the railroad was constructed in the area. That same year, Douglasville was designated as the county seat of the recently formed Douglas County. The community was named for Senator Stephen A. Douglas.
On September 21, 2009, Douglas County was devastated by the worst flood in Georgia history. Over 18 inches (457 mm) of rain fell in one night, destroying many roads and homes. The county was later declared a disaster area, and the governor of Georgia declared a state of emergency. The flooding most affected the areas of Douglasville, Villa Rica, Austell, Lithia Springs, and Chapel Hill. The disaster killed more than eight people in the county, most of them in the Douglasville area.
Douglasville is located in north-central Douglas County at 33°44′59″N 84°43′23″W / 33.74972°N 84.72306°W / 33.74972; -84.72306Coordinates: 33°44′59″N 84°43′23″W / 33.74972°N 84.72306°W / 33.74972; -84.72306 (33.749824, −84.723190). Lithia Springs is 6 miles (10 km) to the northeast along U.S. Route 78, and Villa Rica is 10 miles (16 km) to the west. Hiram is 9 miles (14 km) to the north via SR 92. Downtown Atlanta is 22 miles (35 km) to the east via Interstate 20.
Choose the Right Dental Hygienist School near Douglasville GA
Choosing the right dental hygienist course is essential if you intend to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous alternatives offered to acquire your training and it takes a relatively short period of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal education through dental programs at junior colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these programs usually receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists normally require about 2 years of studies before they enter the work force. When pursuing a degree you can choose to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training you decide to pursue, by addressing the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the appropriate choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Douglasville GA.
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