How to Choose a Dental Hygienist College near Smithfield Utah
Picking the ideal dental hygienist program near Smithfield UT is an important first step toward launching your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you must assess and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than picking the training with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the college that is closest to your residence. There are other significant issues to take into account as well, including the college’s reputation and accreditation. 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 prolonged training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will talk about all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you should be asking the dental hygienist programs you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s look at the roles of dental hygienists and the training programs offered.
The Job of Dental Hygienists
When contrasting the duties of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the main difference is probably that the hygienist works more on their own. Dental assistants work with and in support of the Smithfield UT practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are often the first person a patient encounters when called from the waiting room. They examine every patient’s teeth and gums and present their results to the dentists. They also may perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities can include:
- Removing plaque, tartar and stains
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Polishing teeth and applying sealants
- Educating patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking and developing X-rays
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
In order to be licensed in nearly 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 Exam in addition to passing any state licensing exams. Once they have completed these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Hygienist Training Options
Due to the added responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in Smithfield UT dental practices are often 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 complete and must be accredited by the CDA in almost every state. They are offered in trade and technical schools as well as community colleges. And in addition to classroom studies learning the fundamentals of dental hygiene, there will be a clinical aspect to the training as well| Many programs also sponsor internships with local dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Hygienist Programs
Choosing an online dental hygienist program might be a good option 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 rest of your classes will be provided via your personal computer in the convenience of your Smithfield UT home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while attending college, online dental programs make education a lot more accessible. Some may even offer lower tuition fees than their on-campus counterparts. And additional expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened also. The clinical training can typically be performed at an area dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to obtain the appropriate education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this mode of education, you might find that attending an dental hygienist online school is the best choice for you.
Points to Ask Dental Hygienist Programs
Now that you have decided to become a dental hygienist in Smithfield UT, you can start the process of comparing schools and programs. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many prospective students begin by looking at the location and the cost of the schools. Possibly they look for some online options as well. Although these may be important initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to ask of the programs you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have supplied a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and final selection of the best dental hygienist college for you.
Is the Dental College Accredited? There are a number of valid 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 virtually all states. In order to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps establish that the training you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Smithfield UT employers typically desire or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, frequently they are not offered for non-accredited schools.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Provided? Practical or clinical training is an essential part of any dental training program. This holds true for the online school options also. Many dental hygienist colleges have partnerships with regional dental offices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you choose offers enough clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, make sure that the school you enroll in offers clinical rotation in a local Smithfield UT dental practice that focuses on dental care for children.
Is There an Internship Program? Find out if the dental programs you are exploring sponsor internship programs. Internships are undoubtedly the most effective method 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 build professional relationships in the Smithfield UT dentistry community. And they look good on resumes also.
Is Job Placement Support Offered? Many students that have graduated from dental hygienist programs need assistance landing their first job. Find out if the colleges you are researching have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Smithfield UT dental community in addition to broad networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Smaller? Check with the programs you are looking at how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes usually provide a more intimate atmosphere for training where students have greater access to the instructors. On the other hand, large classes tend to be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If practical, find out if you can attend a couple of classes at the Smithfield UT dental hygienist school that you are leaning toward in order to experience first hand the degree of interaction between students and instructors before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene schools can differ in cost depending on the length of the program and the volume of practical training provided. Other factors, for example 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 costs which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of schools, remember to include all of the costs related to your education. The majority of schools have financial aid departments, so make sure to ask what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the Smithfield UT area.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental hygienist college, you must verify that the assistant or hygienist program offers classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while getting your education and must attend classes near Smithfield UT at nights or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online school, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family issues.
Attending Dental Hygienist School near Smithfield UT?
Smithfield is a city in Cache County, Utah, United States. The population was 9,495 at the 2010 census, with an estimated population of 11,014 in 2014. It is included in the Logan, Utah-Idaho Metropolitan Statistical Area, and is the second largest city in the area after Logan, the county seat. Smithfield is home to Sky View High School.
Originally known as "Summit Creek", Smithfield was founded in 1857 by the brothers Robert and John Thornley along with their cousin Seth Langdon who were sent north from Salt Lake City by Brigham Young to found a settlement on Summit Creek. After a preliminary scouting, Robert returned with his new wife Annie Brighton. The first winter was spent in a wagon box. By the next summer, with more settlers arriving, a small fort was built on the edge of the creek, one cabin of which remains. As the settlement grew, a bishop was named and the town took his name. By 1917 the town had planted trees on both sides of its Main Street and had acquired a Carnegie library and a Rotary club. Dependent for many years on dairying, a Del Monte canning factory, and the sugar beet industry, the town is now essentially a bedroom community for Logan and its Utah State University.
As of the census of 2000, there were 7,261 people, 2,066 households, and 1,782 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,686.6 people per square mile (650.5/km²). There were 2,159 housing units at an average density of 501.5 per square mile (193.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.23% White, 0.12% African American, 0.23% Native American, 0.48% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 2.82% from other races, and 1.06% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.04% of the population.
There were 2,066 households out of which 53.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 78.5% were married couples living together, 6.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 13.7% were non-families. 12.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.51 and the average family size was 3.85.
Enroll in the Best Dental Hygienist School near Smithfield UT
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist course is essential if you want to take the National Board Dental Hygiene examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, 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 obtain 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 generally require about 2 years of studies before they enter the job market. When obtaining a degree you can choose to attend classes on-campus or online. Whichever mode of training you elect to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the right selection. And as a result, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Smithfield UT.
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