How to Choose a Dental Assistant or Hygienist Training Program near Daisy 30423
Selecting the right dental assistant training near Daisy GA is an essential first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your selection, you must analyze and compare your school options. There is far more to doing your due diligence than picking the school with the lowest tuition or enrolling in the program that is nearest to your residence. There are other important factors to consider also, for instance the college’s accreditation and reputation. Your initial step is to decide which of the 2 specialties you are most interested in receiving training for, which may depend on the amount of money and time that you have to invest. The most common dental assistant program generally takes about one year to finish for a diploma or certificate. On the other hand, dental hygienists typically earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to complete. Obviously with the lengthier training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these concerns and supplemental questions that you should be asking the programs you are evaluating later in this article. But first, let’s review the duties of both dental hygienists and assistants and the training options offered.
The Job of Dental Assistants
Dental assistants are an indispensable component of any Daisy dental office and can perform a myriad of duties. Their primary job description is to furnish support to the admin staff and the dentists. In other words, to help keep the practice working successfully. A number of Georgia dental assistants choose to specialize and obtain certification in a specific area, for instance pediatrics. However most assistants perform any duty that they are called upon to complete, for example:
- Setting and verifying appointments
- Preparing patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
- Preparing and sterilizing dental instruments
- Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
- Handing instruments to dentists during procedures
- Prepping X-ray machines and processing X-rays
- Ordering dental and office supplies
Certification and licensing requirements for dental assistants differ by state, so consult with the Georgia dental board for your state’s regulations. Assistants dealing with X-ray machines more than likely will have to be licensed and certified. Most dental assistants who are either required or opt to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam provided by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).
The Role of a Dental Hygienist
When contrasting the role of a Daisy dental assistant to that of a hygienist, the biggest difference is probably that the hygienist works more independently. As previously mentioned, the dental assistant works with and in support of the dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also supporting the Georgia practice, work with the patients more on an individual basis. They are typically the first person a patient interacts with when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and report their results to the dentists. They may also perform basic procedures. Depending on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:
- Removing tartar, stains and plaque
- Applying fluoride treatments
- Applying sealants and polishing teeth
- Educating patients regarding oral hygiene
- Taking X-rays and developing film
- Applying fillings and removing sutures
To qualify for licensing in almost all states, dental hygienists must graduate from a Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA) accredited dental hygiene program. They also must pass the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam as well as any state licensure exams. When they have completed these requirements they are regarded as fully licensed and can add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.
Dental Assistant & Hygienist Training Options
Dental assistant programs are offered at Georgia junior colleges as well as technical or vocational schools. The most frequent credential attained is the certificate, which ordinarily takes about one year to finish. There are less Associate Degree programs available, and they furnish a more extensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assistant classes. Because of the added responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists employed in dental practices are normally required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. 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 also offered in vocational schools and community colleges. Regardless of whether you are pursuing training as a dental hygienist or assistant, there will be a clinical component to the training as well. A number of programs also offer internships with Daisy area dentists or dental practices.
Online Dental Classes
Choosing an online dental hygienist or assistant program might be a viable option for receiving your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a clinical portion to your training. But the rest of your classes will be provided by means of your desktop computer in the convenience of your Daisy home or anywhere else on your laptop or tablet. For those continuing to work while going to college, online dental classes make education a lot more obtainable. Some may even charge 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 often be performed at an area dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the clinical and online training, everything needed to receive the proper education is provided. If you have the dedication for this method of education, you may find that attending an dental online school is the best option for you.
Issues to Cover With Dental Assistant or Hygienist Colleges
Once you have selected the dental specialization and type of credential you want to obtain, you can start the process of comparing Daisy area schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, many potential students start by looking at the cost and the location of the colleges. Perhaps they search for some online options also. Although these are relevant initial considerations, there are several additional questions that you should ask of the Georgia colleges you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and ultimate selection of the best dental school for you.
Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are a number of good reasons why you should only enroll in an accredited dental assistant or hygienist school. If you are planning to become licensed or certified, then accreditation is a requirement in almost all states. In order to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental program must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps ensure that the instruction you receive is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Daisy area employers frequently prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited schools. And last, if you are requesting a student loan or financial aid, frequently they are not provided for non-accredited colleges.
Is The Proper Dental Program Offered? You can opt to train to become a dental hygienist or a dental assistant, just confirm that the college you select has the program that you want. For the assistant program, the alternatives are to enroll in a certificate program or earn an Associate Degree. If you want to earn a living as a hygienist, many Daisy area dental practices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. Higher degrees, although not common, are offered. However, bear in mind that even if a college has an exceptional reputation and accreditation does not mean each one of its programs do as well. For example, an accredited school may have a strong accredited dental assistant program, but could have a weaker or non-accredited hygienist program. So if you are primarily interested in a dental hygiene degree, clearly it would not be the ideal college for you.
Is Plenty of Clinical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is an essential part of every dental training program. This is true for the online school options also. Many Daisy area dental colleges have relationships with regional dental practices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only imperative that the college you choose provides 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 are interested in a career in pediatric dentistry, confirm that the program you select offers clinical rotation in a local dental practice that focuses on dental services for children.
Are Internships Available? Find out if the dental schools you are considering sponsor an internship program. Internships are probably the best means to get hands-on, clinical experience in a real Daisy dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students develop professional relationships in the local dentistry community. And they look good on resumes as well.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Most students that have graduated from dental hygiene or assistant colleges need assistance getting their first job. Check if the schools you are considering have job placement programs, and what their job placement rates are. Schools with high job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the dental community in addition to large networks of contacts where they can place their students for internships or employment.
Are Classes Small? Ask the Georgia programs you are evaluating how big typically their classes are. The smaller classes tend to offer a more intimate setting for training where students have greater access to the teachers. Conversely, large classes often are impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If feasible, ask if you can monitor a few classes at the college that you are most interested in in order to witness first hand the amount of interaction between teachers and students before making a commitment.
What is the Overall Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene and dental assistant programs can fluctuate in cost based on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other variables, for instance the reputations of the colleges and if they are private or public also come into play. But in addition to the tuition there are other significant expenses which can add up. They can include costs for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school materials, equipment and supplies. So when examining the cost of programs, don’t forget to include all of the expenses related to your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so be sure to check out what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in the 30423 area.
Are the Classes Convenient? Before selecting a dental school, you must verify that the hygienist or assistant program offers classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you will be working while getting your education and need to attend classes near Daisy in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you enroll in an online program, you will still be required to schedule your practical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should have to miss any classes because of work, illness or family responsibilities.
Pick the Best Dental Program near Daisy GAEnrolling in the right dental hygienist or dental assistant program is crucial if you want to take the CDA exam or, if required in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are numerous alternatives offered to obtain your training and it takes a relatively short amount of time to become either a dental assistant or hygienist. You can obtain your formal education through dental programs at community colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these programs generally obtain either an Associate Degree or a certificate. Dental Assistants can be practicing in as little as nine months to a year, while Dental Hygienists normally require roughly two years of studies prior to entering the work force. When pursuing either a certificate or a degree you can choose to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of education or credential you choose to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be better prepared to make the ideal selection. And by doing so, you will be ready to start your journey toward becoming a dental assistant or hygienist.