How to Find the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Summit New Jersey
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist school near Summit NJ is an essential initial step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must evaluate and compare your school options. There is much more to completing your due diligence than choosing the college with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the program that is nearest to your home. There are other significant factors to take into account as well, including the college’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 accomplish. Naturally with the longer training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will discuss all of these factors and supplemental questions that you need to be asking the dental hygienist colleges you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s explore the duties of dental hygienists and the training programs provided.
The Duties of a Dental Hygienist
When comparing the duties of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the main difference is undoubtedly that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Summit NJ practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are usually the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and report their findings to the dentists. They may also carry out 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
- Instructing patients about oral care
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in almost all states, dental hygienists must have graduated 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. After they have fulfilled these requirements they are deemed fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
Due to the added responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Summit NJ dental offices are generally required to hold an Associate Degree in dental hygiene rather than a certificate. These programs can require anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to complete 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 aspect to the training as well| Some programs also offer internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Hygienist Online Training
Enrolling in an online dental hygienist school can be a good alternative for receiving your education. Just remember that the program will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical component to your training. But the balance of your classes will be provided by means of your personal computer in the comfort of your Summit NJ home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those working while going to college, online dental classes make education much more accessible. Some may even charge lower tuition costs than their on-campus counterparts. And supplementary expenses such as for commuting, books and school supplies may be reduced also. The clinical training can usually be completed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything required to receive the proper education is provided. If you have the discipline for this mode of education, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online college is the best choice for you.
Questions to Cover With Dental Hygienist Schools
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Summit NJ, you can begin the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, a number of potential students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the colleges. Possibly they search for several online options as well. Even though these may be significant initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you need to address to the schools you are comparing in order to make an informed decision. Toward that end, we have included a list of questions to help you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the ideal dental hygienist program for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are several good reasons why you should only pick an accredited dental hygienist college. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a prerequisite in almost all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the education you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Summit NJ employers typically desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, usually they are not available for non-accredited programs.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is a necessary part of any dental training program. This holds true for the online college options as well. A number of dental hygienist schools have associations with area dental offices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only important that the college you select offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently want to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the program you choose offers clinical rotation in a local Summit NJ dental office that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental schools you are evaluating have an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the most effective means to obtain hands-on, practical experience in a professional dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students create professional relationships in the Summit NJ dentistry community. And they are attractive on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs need help getting their first job. Find out if the programs you are looking at have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Summit NJ dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can place their students for employment or internships.
Are Classes Smaller? Ask the programs you are reviewing how large on average their classes are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more personal setting for learning where students have greater access to the teachers. Conversely, bigger classes can be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If practical, find out if you can monitor a few classes at the Summit NJ dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward so that you can experience first hand the level of interaction between students and teachers before enrolling.
What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can fluctuate in cost based on the length of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, for example the reputations of the colleges and whether they are private or public also have an impact. But in addition to 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 examining the cost of schools, remember to add all of the expenses related to your education. Most schools have financial assistance offices, so be sure to find out what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Summit NJ area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental hygienist school, you need to verify that the hygienist or assistant program furnishes classes that suit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while acquiring your education and need to go to classes near Summit NJ in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you choose an online program, you will still have to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up policy is if you should have to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Summit NJ?
Summit, New Jersey
Summit is a city in Union County, New Jersey, United States. At the 2010 United States Census, the city's population was 21,457, reflecting an increase of 326 (+1.5%) from the 21,131 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 1,374 (+7.0%) from the 19,757 counted in the 1990 Census. Summit had the 16th-highest per capita income in the state as of the 2000 Census  According to Bloomberg, Summit ranked as the 72nd richest town in America in 2018, with an average household income of $220,971.
Originally incorporated as Summit Township by an act of the New Jersey Legislature on March 23, 1869, from portions of New Providence Township (now Berkeley Heights) and Springfield Township, Summit was reincorporated as a city on March 8, 1899.
Possible derivations of Summit's name include its location atop the Second Watchung Mountain; the Summit Lodge, the house to which jurist James Kent moved in 1837 and which stands today at 50 Kent Place Boulevard; and to a local sawmill owner who granted passage to the Morris and Essex Railroad for a route to "the summit of the Short Hills".
The region in which Summit is located was purchased from Native Americans on October 28, 1664. Summit's earliest European settlers came to the area around the year 1710. The original name of Summit was "Turkey Hill" to distinguish it from the area then known as "Turkey" (New Providence's original name until 1759). During the American Revolutionary War, Summit was known as "Beacon Hill", because bonfire beacons were lit on an eastern ridge in Summit to warn the New Jersey militiamen of approaching British troops.
Enroll in the Right Dental Hygienist Program near Summit NJ
Enrolling in the ideal dental hygienist program is crucial 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 many alternatives offered to obtain your education and it takes a relatively short period 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 programs normally earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists normally require roughly 2 years of studies before they enter the job market. When earning a degree you can elect to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you decide to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the best choice. And as a result, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Summit NJ.
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