How to Find the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Perry Georgia
Picking the right dental hygienist school near Perry GA is an important initial step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your choice, you need to analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than selecting the program with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the college that is closest to your home. There are other significant factors to take into account also, including 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 two to three years to complete. Naturally with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will explore all of these concerns and additional questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist programs you are assessing later in this article. But first, let’s look at the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs available.
The Duties of Dental Hygienists
When comparing the duties of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the biggest difference is probably that the hygienist works more independently. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Perry GA dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also supporting the practice, work with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are often the first 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 may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Teaching patients regarding oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
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 must also pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination as well as any state licensure examinations. When they have fulfilled these requirements they are deemed fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Education Options
Because of the additional responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Perry GA dental offices are usually required to hold an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can take 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| Many programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Online Dental Hygienist Classes
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist school might be a great alternative for getting your education. Just remember that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the remainder of your classes will be available via your personal computer in the convenience of your Perry GA home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while going to college, online dental programs make education far more obtainable. Many may even charge lower tuition fees than their on-campus competitors. And supplementary expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened as well. The clinical training can usually be performed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything necessary to get the appropriate education is provided. If you have the discipline for this style of education, you may find that attending an dental hygienist online college is the right option for you.
Issues to Cover With Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Perry GA, you can start the procedure of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the start of this article, a number of potential students start by checking out the cost and the location of the colleges. Maybe they look for several online options also. Even though these are relevant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to ask of the schools you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and final selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental School Accredited? There are several important reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a requirement in almost 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 guarantee that the instruction you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Perry GA employers typically desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And finally, if you are requesting financial aid or a student loan, usually they are not provided for non-accredited schools.
Is Enough Practical Training Provided? Clinical or practical training is a necessary component of any dental training program. This applies for the online college options also. Many dental hygienist colleges have associations with area dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only important that the school you choose 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 are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the school you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Perry GA dental practice that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are considering have internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the best method to get hands-on, practical experience in a real dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students form professional relationships in the Perry GA dentistry community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Assistance Furnished? Most graduating students of dental hygienist schools require help obtaining their first job. Find out if the programs you are researching have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Perry GA dental profession as well as large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for employment or internships.
Are the Classrooms Smaller? Ask the colleges you are reviewing how large typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more personal environment for learning where students have greater access to the instructors. Conversely, large classes often are impersonal and provide little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can attend a few classes at the Perry GA dental hygienist college that you are most interested in so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between students and teachers before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene programs can differ in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, such as the reputations of the schools and if they are public or private also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when examining the cost of programs, remember to include all of the costs associated with your education. Most schools have financial aid departments, so make sure to find out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Perry GA area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist college, you need to make sure that the hygienist or assistant program provides classes that fit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while receiving your education and need to go to classes near Perry GA in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online school, you will still be required 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 due to illness, work or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Perry GA?
Perry is a city in Houston and Peach counties in the U.S. state of Georgia. It is the county seat of Houston County. The population was 13,839 at the 2010 census, up from 9,602 at the 2000 census. As of 2015 the estimated population was 15,457. It is part of the Warner Robins, Georgia Metropolitan Statistical Area, within the Macon–Bibb County–Warner Robins Combined Statistical Area.
Founded in 1823 as "Wattsville", the town was located near the center of Houston County and served as its courthouse. The name was soon changed to honor Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, a hero of the War of 1812. The Georgia General Assembly incorporated the town on December 9, 1824. The original city limit was a circle, one mile in diameter, except where bounded on the north by Big Indian Creek.
Antebellum industry in Perry included gristmills, sawmills, and cotton gins. The Houston Home Journal (now the Houston Times-Journal) began publishing in 1870. Robins Air Force Base in nearby Warner Robins has been a significant employer since World War II. Other manufacturers in the city have included Frito-Lay, Perdue Farms (formally Heileman Brewing Co.), and Cemex, Inc. (formally Penn-Dixie Cement and Medusa Cement Company).
Tourism has been important to the local economy since about 1920, when U.S. Highway 41 to Florida was paved. The New Perry Hotel, built in 1870 and rebuilt in 1925, became a landmark for many Florida tourists. President Jimmy Carter's family frequented the hotel. The downtown area is home to several quaint shops and restaurants. In the early 1960s Interstate 75 passed through the western side of the city, bringing more businesses that cater to travelers. The Georgia National Fairgrounds and Agricenter opened in 1990. The Go Fish Georgia Education Center opened October 8, 2010.
Choose the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Perry GA
Choosing the right dental hygienist course is crucial if you wish to take the National Board Dental Hygiene exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous options offered to acquire your education and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can receive your formal training through dental programs at junior colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these programs usually obtain an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists usually require approximately two years of studies before they enter the work force. When obtaining a degree you can choose to go to classes on-campus or online. 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 selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Perry GA.
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