Where Do Dental Hygienists Work?

Are you curious about the work obligations, education, job growth, and salary of dental hygienists? If so, you've come to the right place. In this article, we'll explore the duties of dental hygienists, compare them to similar occupations, and discuss the educational requirements and job outlook for this profession. Dental hygienists are preventive oral health professionals who have graduated from an accredited dental hygiene program at a higher education institution. They are licensed to provide educational, clinical, research, administrative, and therapeutic services that support total health through advocacy for optimal oral health.

The tasks that hygienists can perform, and the extent to which they should be supervised by a dentist, vary depending on the state and environment in which they work. In some states, dental hygienists are allowed to place and carve filling materials, place temporary fillings and periodontal dressings, remove sutures, perform root planing, and smooth and polish metal restorations. Dental hygienists also instruct patients of all ages on how to properly brush and floss, and emphasize the importance of doing so. They may also take x-rays to help dentists detect cavities, gum disease, oral infections, and even some types of tumors.

Before any dental work is performed, the hygienist must conduct a medical history. The pay tab describes typical earnings and how workers in the occupation are compensated: annual wages, hourly wages, commissions, tips or bonuses. Within each occupation, earnings vary by experience, responsibility, performance, seniority and geographical area. For most profiles, this tab has a table with salaries in the main industries employing the occupation.

The job outlook tab describes the factors that affect the growth or decline of employment in the occupation and in some cases describes the relationship between the number of job applicants and the number of job offers. Regis College is one of New England's premier dental hygiene programs offering associate's and bachelor's degrees in science. Our program has very high success rates with 100% of students participating in outreach projects while in the program. Regis students have access to an on-campus dental center which houses an active dental hygiene office.

After their third year of study students will be eligible to sit for board exams for license. The American Association of Dental Hygienists (ADHA) offers scholarships and grants to dental hygiene students and dental hygienists who can demonstrate their commitment to promoting the discipline of dental hygiene through academic achievement professional excellence and a desire to improve the general health of the public health. Dentists can hire hygienists to work only a few days a week so some hygienists work for more than one dentist. Dental hygienists wear safety glasses surgical masks and gloves to protect themselves and patients from infectious diseases. The American Dental Association (ADA) Foundation offers a variety of grants awards and scholarships to dental students. This table shows a list of occupations with tasks similar to those of dental hygienists:

  • Dental Assistants
  • Dental Laboratory Technicians
  • Dental Technicians
  • Medical Assistants
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Dental hygienists play an important role in providing preventive oral health care services for patients of all ages. They are responsible for educating patients on proper oral hygiene techniques as well as performing clinical procedures such as taking x-rays or placing fillings. The pay for this profession varies depending on experience responsibility performance seniority geographical area as well as other factors. If you're interested in becoming a dental hygienist you'll need to complete an accredited program at a higher education institution as well as obtain licensure in your state or country.

Additionally there are several organizations such as ADHA that offer scholarships grants or awards to help aspiring dental hygienists achieve their goals.

Benjamín Gonçalves
Benjamín Gonçalves

Certified web maven. Freelance writer. Award-winning travel evangelist. Infuriatingly humble internet buff. Certified bacon practitioner.

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