Search For Dental Hygienist Colleges | How to Become a Dental Hygienist near Piermont NY 10968

How to Select a Dental Assistant or Hygienist School near Piermont 10968

dental assistant training in Piermont NYPicking the right dental hygienist training near Piermont NY is an essential first step toward starting your new career in dentistry. But before you can make your choice, you must evaluate and compare your school options. There is far more to completing your due diligence than picking the training with the most affordable tuition or enrolling in the program that is closest to your home. There are other important issues to take into account as well, for instance the college’s reputation and accreditation. Your first step is to decide which of the two specializations you are most interested in receiving training for, which may be contingent on the amount of time and money that you have to commit. The most common dental assistant program usually takes about one year to complete for a certificate or diploma. Meanwhile, dental hygienists generally earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from 2 to 3 years to finish. Naturally with the longer training of a hygienist comes more expense. We will cover all of these issues and additional questions that you should be asking the colleges you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s look at the duties of both dental hygienists and assistants and the training options provided.

The Role of a Dental Assistant

Piermont dental assistant helping dentist 10968Dental assistants are an important part of any Piermont dental practice and can undertake a myriad of tasks. Their main job description is to furnish support to the admin staff and the dentists. In other words, to help keep the practice working efficiently. Some New York dental assistants opt to specialize and acquire certification in a particular area, for example orthodontics. Even so the majority of assistants carry out any duty that they are asked to fulfill, for example:

  • Scheduling and confirming appointments
  • Prepping patients for teeth treatments and cleanings
  • Preparing and sterilizing dental instruments
  • Clearing patients’ mouths with suction equipment
  • Supplying instruments to dentists during procedures
  • Preparing X-ray machines and processing X-rays
  • Purchasing office and dental supplies

Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants vary by state, so consult with the New York dental board for your state’s policies. Assistants handling X-ray machines most likely will need to be certified and licensed. Many dental assistants who are either required or choose to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).

The Job of Dental Hygienists

Piermont dental hygienist treating patient in New YorkWhen comparing the role of a Piermont dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the biggest difference is probably that the hygienist works more independently. As earlier mentioned, the dental assistant works with and in support of the dentists and the practice. Hygienists, while also assisting the New York practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are frequently the initial person a patient sees when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and present their findings to the dentists. They may also carry out basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s responsibilities may include:

  • Removing tartar, stains and plaque
  • Administering fluoride treatments
  • Polishing teeth and applying sealants
  • Instructing patients about oral care
  • Taking and developing X-rays
  • 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 in addition to passing any state licensing examinations. After they have fulfilled these requirements they are considered fully licensed and may add the “RDH” designation to their names, signifying Registered Dental Hygienist.

Dental Hygienist & Assistant Education Options

Dental assistant programs are available at New York community colleges as well as trade or vocational schools. The most frequent credential earned is the certificate, which ordinarily takes about a year to complete. There are less Associate Degree programs available, and they furnish a more extensive education, incorporating general subjects in addition to the dental assisting classes. As a result of the increased 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 take anywhere from two to as long as three years to finish and must be accredited by the CDA in nearly every state. They are also offered in community colleges and technical schools. Regardless of whether you are pursuing training as a dental hygienist or assistant, there will be a clinical aspect to the training also. Many programs also offer internships with Piermont area dentists or dental practices.

Online Dental Classes

attending dental assistant school online in Piermont homeChoosing an online dental hygienist or assistant program may be a good alternative for obtaining your training. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a practical portion to your training. But the balance of your classes will be available by means of your personal computer in the comfort of your Piermont home or elsewhere on your tablet or laptop. For those continuing to work while attending school, online dental classes make education far more accessible. Some may even offer lower tuition rates than their on-campus competitors. And supplementary expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced as well. The clinical training can usually be performed at a community dental office or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything necessary to obtain the proper education is furnished. If you have the discipline for this method of education, you might find that enrolling in an dental online college is the ideal choice for you.

What to Ask Dental Assistant or Hygienist Programs

Questions to ask New York dental colleges 10968Once you have selected the dental specialty and kind of credential you wish to attain, you can begin the process of comparing Piermont area schools and programs. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of students begin by checking out the location and the cost of the schools. Maybe they look for some online options as well. Even though these may be important initial considerations, there are a few additional questions that you should address to the New York programs you are comparing in order to reach an informed decision. To start that process, we have supplied a list of questions to assist you with your evaluation and final selection of the right dental college for you.

Is the Dental Program Accredited? There are several important reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist or assistant program. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, 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 establish that the training you get is of the highest quality and comprehensive. Piermont area employers typically desire or require that job applicants are graduates of accredited schools. And finally, if you are applying for a student loan or financial aid, often they are not provided for non-accredited schools.

Is The Correct Dental Program Offered? You can opt to train to become a dental hygienist or a dental assistant, just make sure that the college you select offers the program that’s right for you. For the assistant program, the alternatives are to earn either a certificate or an Associate Degree. In order to earn a living as a hygienist, the majority of Piermont area dental offices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. More advanced degrees, although not common, are offered. However, bear in mind that just because a college has a good reputation as well as 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 college for you.

Is Adequate Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is a necessary portion of every dental training program. This is true for the online school options as well. A number of Piermont area dental schools have relationships with area dental practices and clinics that furnish clinical training for their students. It’s not only essential that the program you enroll in offers enough 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, check that the college you choose offers clinical rotation in an area dental practice that specializes in dental care for children.

Is There an Internship Program? Verify if the dental programs you are considering have internship programs. Internships are probably the most effective means to get hands-on, clinical experience in a real Piermont dental practice. They help students to transition from the theoretical to the practical. They can also help students establish professional relationships in the local dentistry community. And they are attractive on resumes also.

Is Job Placement Assistance Furnished? Many graduating students of dental assistant or hygiene colleges require assistance obtaining their first job. Ask if the programs you are looking at have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with high job placement rates probably have excellent reputations within the dental community in addition to extensive networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.

Are the Classrooms Smaller? Check with the New York programs you are interested in how large on average their classes are. The smaller classes generally offer a more intimate atmosphere for learning where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, larger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little one-on-one instruction. If practical, find out if you can attend a few classes at the college that you are leaning toward so that you can witness first hand the amount of interaction between teachers and students before making a commitment.

 What is the Total Expense of the Program? Dental hygiene and dental assistant training can vary in cost dependent on the length of the program and the volume of clinical training provided. Other variables, for example the reputations of the colleges and whether they are private or public also come into play. But besides 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 materials, equipment and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of schools, don’t forget to add all of the costs related to your education. Most schools have financial aid offices, so make sure to ask what is available as far as grants, loans and scholarships in the 10968 area.

Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental college, you need to confirm that the assistant or hygienist program offers classes that fit your schedule. This is especially true if you continue working while receiving your education and need to attend classes near Piermont at nights or on weekends. And even if you select an online program, you will still be required to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up practice is if you should need to miss any classes due to illness, work or family responsibilities.

Pick the Right Dental School near Piermont NY

Picking the right dental assistant or dental hygienist program is imperative if you want to take the CDA examination or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As you now know, there are several options offered to obtain your education and it takes a relatively short period of time to become either a dental hygienist or assistant. You can obtain your formal training through dental programs at junior colleges, trade schools, vocational schools and technical institutes. Graduates of these programs typically receive either a certificate or an Associate Degree. Dental Assistants can be working in as little as nine months to a year, while Dental Hygienists typically require roughly 2 years of studies before they enter the work force. When earning either a degree or a certificate you can choose to go to classes online or on-campus. Whichever credential or mode of training you decide to pursue, by asking the questions provided in this article you will be better prepared to make the appropriate choice. And as a result, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist or assistant.

 

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