How to Enroll In a Dental Hygienist College near Pembroke Georgia
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist program near Pembroke GA is an important first step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you need to evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than picking the college with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your home. There are other important issues to consider also, such as the college’s accreditation and reputation. 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 finish. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more cost. We will explore all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist schools you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s review the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs available.
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When comparing the duties 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 assists the Pembroke GA practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the initial person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s gums and teeth and present their results to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s duties may include:
- Removing stains, tartar and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Instructing patients regarding oral care
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
To qualify for licensing in nearly 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 Examination as well as any state licensure exams. Once they have completed these requirements they are considered fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
Due to the increased responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists working in Pembroke GA dental practices are usually required to hold an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can take 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 practical component to the training as well| Many programs also offer internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Programs
Selecting an online dental hygienist program can be a great alternative for receiving your training. Just remember that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be available by means of your personal computer in the convenience of your Pembroke GA home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those working while attending school, online dental classes make education a lot more accessible. Many may even charge lower tuition costs than their traditional competitors. And supplementary expenses for items like books, school supplies and commuting may be lessened as well. The practical training can often be completed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything required to obtain the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this method of education, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online college is the best option for you.
Points to Cover With Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Pembroke GA, you can start the procedure of comparing programs and schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, many prospective students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Possibly they look for some online options also. Even though these may be important initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to ask of the schools you are reviewing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are many valid reasons why you should only select an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are going to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in almost all states. To qualify to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the education you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Pembroke GA employers typically prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not available for non-accredited schools.
Is Enough Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a necessary part of every dental training program. This holds true for the online school options as well. Most dental hygienist colleges have relationships with area dental practices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the school you choose provides sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. As an example, if you are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the college you select offers clinical rotation in a local Pembroke GA dental practice that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental colleges you are exploring have internship programs. Internships are probably the ideal method to get 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 build working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Many graduating students of dental hygienist schools require help obtaining their first job. Ask if the schools you are considering have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Pembroke GA dental profession in addition to broad networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are Classrooms Small? Find out from the schools you are reviewing how large on average their classes are. The smaller classes generally offer a more intimate environment for training where students have increased access to the instructors. Conversely, larger classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If practical, ask if you can sit in on a couple of classes at the Pembroke GA dental hygienist college that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the amount of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene training can differ in cost based on the length of the program and the amount of clinical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and whether they are private or public also have an impact. But along with the tuition there are other substantial costs which can add up. They can include costs for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when comparing the cost of programs, remember to include all of the costs related to your education. The majority of colleges have financial aid offices, so be sure to find out what is offered as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the Pembroke GA area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you need to verify that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while getting your education and have to go to classes near Pembroke GA in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online college, 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 need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Pembroke GA?
Pembroke is a small city in Bryan County, Georgia, United States. The population was 2,196 at the 2010 census. The city is the county seat of Bryan County. Pembroke is located approximately 35 miles west of Savannah, GA, and approximately 20 miles south of Statesboro, GA.
Pembroke is located in northern Bryan County at 32°08′24″N 81°37′25″W / 32.139892°N 81.623553°W / 32.139892; -81.623553.U.S. Route 280 passes through the center of the city, leading east 10 miles (16 km) to Interstate 16 and 35 miles (56 km) to Savannah. Claxton is 16 miles (26 km) to the west.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Pembroke has a total area of 7.7 square miles (19.9 km2), of which 7.6 square miles (19.6 km2) is land and 0.077 square miles (0.2 km2), or 1.17%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,379 people, 819 households, and 630 families residing in the city. The population density was 312.5 people per square mile (120.7/km²). There were 909 housing units at an average density of 119.4 per square mile (46.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 59.56% White, 38.04% African American, 0.13% Native American, 0.42% Asian, 0.34% Pacific Islander, 0.34% from other races, and 1.18% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.64% of the population.
Choose the Best Dental Hygienist College near Pembroke GA
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist course is imperative if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are a number of options offered to obtain your training and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can receive your formal education through dental programs at junior colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these schools normally receive an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists usually require approximately two years of studies prior to entering the work force. When pursuing a degree you can elect to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of training you elect to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be better prepared to make the right choice. And by doing so, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Pembroke GA.
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