How to Choose a Dental Hygienist College near Wilmington Ohio
Choosing the ideal dental hygienist college near Wilmington OH is an important first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must assess and compare your school options. There is much more to doing your due diligence than selecting the college with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the school that is closest to your home. There are other crucial issues to consider as well, for instance the college’s accreditation and reputation. Your first step is to decide which of the two specialties you are most interested in obtaining training for, which may depend on the amount of money and time that you have to commit. The most typical dental assistant program normally takes about 12 months to finish for a diploma or certificate. However, dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to complete. Obviously with the prolonged training of a dental hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these issues and supplemental questions that you should be asking the colleges you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s explore the roles of both dental hygienists and assistants and the training options provided.
The Job of Dental Hygienists
When contrasting the job of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the main difference is undoubtedly that the dental hygienist works more independently. As earlier mentioned, the dental assistant works with and in support of the practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the Wilmington OH practice, deal with the patients more on an individual basis. They are often the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and present their results to the dentists. They also may carry out basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s duties may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Administering fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Teaching patients about oral care
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Removing sutures and applying fillings
To qualify for licensing in almost 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 Exam as well as any state licensing examinations. When they have completed these requirements they are considered fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
The Duties of Dental Assistants
Dental assistants are an essential part of any Wilmington OH dental office and can undertake a wide range of duties. Their fundamental job description is to give support to the admin staff and the dentists. In other words, to help keep the practice working successfully. A number of dental assistants elect to specialize and obtain certification in a specific area, such as periodontics. Even so the majority of assistants perform any job that they are called upon to complete, for example:
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Preparing patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Sterilizing and preparing instruments for dentists
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Providing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Readying X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Ordering office and dental supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants deviate by state, so consult with the Ohio dental board for your state’s regulations. Assistants dealing with X-ray machines most likely will need to be licensed and certified. Many dental assistants who are either required or decide to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam provided by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
Dental Hygienist and Assistant Education Options
Dental assistant courses are provided at Wilmington OH area community colleges in addition to trade or vocational schools. The most common credential acquired is the certificate, which ordinarily takes about one year to finish. There are less Associate Degree programs offered, and they provide a more comprehensive education, including general subjects in addition to the dental assisting courses. As a result of the increased responsibility in contrast to an assistant, dental hygienists working in dental offices are often required to hold an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. 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 also offered in Wilmington OH area trade schools and community colleges. Whether you are interested in training as a dental assistant or hygienist, there will be a clinical component to the training also. Some programs also offer internships with local dental practices or dentists.
Dental Hygienist Online Training
Choosing an online dental hygienist college may be a great alternative for obtaining your training. Just remember that the classes will not be totally online, since there will be a clinical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be provided by means of your personal computer in the convenience of your Wilmington OH home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while attending college, online dental classes make education a lot more accessible. Some may even charge lower tuition costs than their traditional competitors. And added expenses for items like commuting, books and school supplies may be lessened as well. The clinical training can usually be completed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything required to receive the proper education is provided. If you have the discipline for this mode of learning, you might find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist college is the ideal option for you.
Points to Cover With Dental Hygienist Colleges
When you have picked the dental specialization and kind of credential you want to attain, you can start the procedure of comparing Ohio schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of prospective students start by looking at the location and the cost of the schools. Possibly they search for several online alternatives as well. Even though these may be important initial points to consider, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the Wilmington OH area colleges you are looking at 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 ideal dental hygienist school 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 licensed or certified, then accreditation is a condition in almost all states. To qualify to take the Certified Dental Assistant examination, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the instruction you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Employers in Wilmington OH often prefer or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited programs. And last, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not available for non-accredited Ohio programs.
Is The Appropriate Dental Program Available? You can choose to train to become a dental hygienist or a dental assistant, just make sure that the Ohio college you choose has the program that you want. For the assistant program, the alternatives are to earn either a certificate or an Associate Degree. If you want to have a career as a hygienist, the majority of Wilmington OH dental practices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. Higher degrees, although not common, are offered. However, keep in mind that just because a college has an excellent reputation and accreditation does not mean all of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited college may have a solid accredited dental assistant program, but may have a weaker or non-accredited hygienist program. So if you are just interested in a dental hygiene degree, naturally it would not be the right school for you.
Is Enough Practical Training Included? Practical or clinical training is an important component of every dental training program. This applies for the online college options also. Many dental schools have relationships with regional dental practices and clinics that provide clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you select offers sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the type of practice that you ultimately would like to work in. As an example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, verify that the Wilmington OH college you choose offers clinical rotation in a local dental practice that specializes in dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental programs you are looking at have an internship program. Internships are probably the ideal way to obtain hands-on, clinical experience in a real Wilmington OH dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish working relationships in the professional dental community. And they are attractive on resumes too.
Is Job Placement Support Furnished? Many graduating students of dental hygiene programs require help obtaining their first job. Find out if the schools you are researching have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with higher job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the Wilmington OH dental profession in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can position their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Smaller? Find out from the Ohio programs you are looking at how large on average their classes are. The smaller classes generally offer a more intimate setting for training where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, bigger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If practical, ask if you can monitor a couple of classes at the college that you are leaning toward so that you can experience first hand the degree of interaction between instructors and students before enrolling.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene colleges can differ in cost dependent on the duration of the program and the volume of practical 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 expenses which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as textbooks and commuting as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when comparing the cost of colleges, don’t forget to include all of the expenses associated with your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is available as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Wilmington OH.
Are the Classes Accessible? Before enrolling in a dental college, you must make sure that the hygienist program furnishes classes that accommodate your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while getting your education and have to go to classes near your Wilmington OH home at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online school, you will still need to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while making your inquiries, ask what the make-up policy is if you should need to miss any classes due to work, illness or family responsibilities.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Dental Hygienist?When preparing to interview for a Dental Hygiene job, it's a good idea to consider questions you may be asked. One of the questions that recruiters often ask Dental Hygienist candidates is "What drove you to decide on Hygiene as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not just the private reasons you may have for becoming a Dental Hygienist, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to Hygiene, along with a certain number of typical interview questions, so you must prepare several strategies about how you want to address them. Since there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the strengths you have that make you an outstanding Dental Hygienist and the perfiect candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down some ideas and talking points that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
Find the Best Dental Hygienist Program near Wilmington OH
Selecting the ideal dental hygienist course is imperative if you intend to take the CDA examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous options available to obtain your education and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can obtain your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, technical institutes, trade schools and vocational schools. Graduates of these programs usually earn an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists usually require about two years of studies before they enter the work force. When pursuing a degree you can elect to attend classes online or on-campus. Whichever credential or mode of training you choose to pursue, by addressing the questions provided in this article you will be in a better position to make the best choice. And as a result, you will be ready to begin your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Wilmington OH.
A Bit About Wilmington Ohio
Wilmington College (Ohio)
Wilmington College is a private career-oriented liberal arts institution established by Quakers in 1870 in Wilmington, Ohio, United States. The college is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Wilmington College is known for its Agriculture program (one of only two in Ohio), its Athletic Training program, and its Education program. As of fall 2015, there were 990 students attending Wilmington's main campus, and 213 students at Wilmington's two Cincinnati branches at Blue Ash and Cincinnati State.
Wilmington College offers undergraduate major programs in a number of academic and career areas including art, English literature, biology, chemistry, history, mathematics, philosophy, psychology, Spanish language and literature, and religion, as well as in such areas as education, business, communications, agriculture, equine studies, athletic training, social work, and more. The college also offers a master's degree program in education, with specialties in special education and reading and undergraduate courses at several sites in Cincinnati. The college welcomes transfer students and has a significant number of commuting students. More than half of the students participate in intercollegiate athletics. Wilmington College students enjoy robust on-site and online library resources. The college's Watson Library is a member of the OPAL (Ohio Private Academic Libraries) consortium and the OhioLINK consortium that provides an integrated catalog, e-resources, and more than 100 research databases.
The Wilmington College Peace Resource Center, established in 1975, plays a major role in furthering the peacemaking and reconciliation elements in the mission statement of the college, in large part through providing peace education materials, both locally and throughout the country. The PRC is known, in particular, for its Hiroshima/Nagasaki Memorial Collection founded on the archives of Barbara Leonard Reynolds, which the college believes is "the world's largest collection (outside of Japan) of reference materials related to the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki." Reynolds' archives are also housed in part at the Earle and Akie Reynolds Archive at the University of California, Santa Cruz. The Peace Resource Center is also known for its ProjectTRUST camp (leadership and anti-bullying focus) for middle schoolers and Positive Discipline training for educators. The Center has been active in the Wilmington Community in establishing peer mediation in the local schools. In August 2010, the Peace Resource Center of Wilmington College hosted the National Peace Academy's 2010 Peacebuilding Peacelearning Intensive program on the theme of "Capacitating Community Peacebuilding."
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