Even though surgeries and therapies that are difficult to apply don’t fall under the category of practices a dental hygienist is responsible for, it can be a challenge to maintain the highest level of efficiency in this career.
Job OverviewDental hygienists need to keep up to date with the latest knowledge associated with dental medicine and knowledge, and they also need to have an uncanny ability of advising people regarding what they should or shouldn’t do in order to keep their teeth clean and healthy.
Here are a few of the responsibilities of dental hygienists:
- Preventive services: these are generally required for maintaining and promoting the importance of good oral hygiene and the provision of information and advice on the proper use of oral hygiene techniques.
- Educating people on improper practices that could end up harming their teeth in the future is the second type of service that a dental hygienist has to offer.
- Finally, applying treatments and therapy practices is the third, and probably the most essential requirement, involving the diagnosing of diseases and the specific selection of treatments, as well as their application alongside a certified dentist.
SalaryDental hygienist salaries can be quite rewarding overall even though they are a bit less consistent than the pay earned by most licensed dentists. The average yearly salary is currently about $66,000, while it can also reach values of more than $75,000 in the case of some of the most experienced and skilled hygienists.
The good news is that even if you don’t have much experience, your hourly wage will rarely drop below 25-30 dollars, so as a dental hygienist, financial issues will probably be among the least of your concerns, especially as you continue to make progress with your career.
TrainingThe great news for those who are just deciding on a career in the medical field and are attracted to the prospect of being certified dental hygienists in about 7-8 years is that the demand for these types of jobs is likely to grow by almost 40% till the year 2020 – along with the remuneration.
What are the steps you have to follow to actually become a successful dental hygienist? Let’s find out:
- The first good news of the day for aspiring dental hygienists is that they only need a high school diploma or a GED certificate in order to get into a dental hygienist educational program.
- You have to complete your ACT or SAT exam, and most colleges will also require a C average in your high school scores and higher than average results in disciplines such as biology, math and English.
- Next, you can either apply to a 4 year university, a social science program run by a community college which will include clinical studies or a 2-year associate or certificate program provided by a technical school.
While applying for a dental hygienist program, always make sure that it will help you pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination, which will eventually allow you to apply for a state license. An additional clinical exam will also be required for this in order to become a Registered Dental Hygienist (RDH) and be able to start your career.
Reviews & AdviceReviews consider this to be a fairly well-paid job and quite an easy one compared to many others in the medical field – especially since the training requirements are not that difficult to meet.
In order to become a good dental hygienist, however, you also need to be dedicated to researching the best new practices and preventive methods, while also maintaining a close bond with patients and always being willing to help them.