Tag Archives: Associates Degree in Dental Hygiene Clayton AL 36016

Dental Hygiene Degree Schools near Clayton AL 36016

How to Find the Right Dental Hygienist School near Clayton Alabama

Clayton AL dental hygienist cleaning patient's teethChoosing the right dental hygienist college near Clayton AL is an important first step toward beginning your new career in dentistry. But prior to making your selection, you must assess and compare your school options. There is much more to doing your due diligence than choosing the school with the least expensive tuition or enrolling in the program that is nearest to your home. There are other important factors to take into account as well, for instance the school’s accreditation and reputation. Your first step is to decide which of the two specializations you are most interested in receiving training for, which may depend on the amount of time and money that you are willing to commit. The most common dental assistant program normally takes about one year to finish for a certificate or diploma. On the other hand, dental hygienists usually earn an Associate Degree, which can take anywhere from two to three years to complete. Naturally with the prolonged training of a dental hygienist comes more cost. We will cover all of these factors and supplemental questions that you should be asking the colleges you are analyzing later in this article. But first, let’s explore the roles of both dental hygienists and assistants and the training options offered.

The Job of a Dental Hygienist

Clayton AL dental hygienist assisting dentistWhen contrasting the job of a dental hygienist to that of an assistant, the most significant difference is undoubtedly that the dental hygienist works more independently. As earlier discussed, the dental assistant works with and assists the practice and the dentists. Hygienists, while also assisting the Clayton AL practice, deal with the patients more on a one-to-one basis. They are typically the initial person a patient sees when called from the waiting room. They examine each patient’s teeth and gums and report their findings to the dentists. They also may perform basic procedures. Based on state law, a hygienist’s duties may include:

  • Removing stains, tartar and plaque
  • Administering fluoride treatments
  • Applying sealants and polishing teeth
  • Educating patients about oral hygiene
  • Taking X-rays and developing film
  • Removing sutures and applying fillings

In order to be licensed in nearly 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 Examination in addition to passing 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, standing for Registered Dental Hygienist.

The Role of a Dental Assistant

training as a dental hygienist in Clayton ALDental assistants are an essential component of any Clayton AL dental practice and can carry out a variety of functions. Their principal job description is to give assistance to the dentists and the administrative staff. In other words, to help keep the practice working efficiently. A number of dental assistants choose to specialize and obtain certification in a particular area, for example pediatrics. Even so most assistants carry out any job that they are called upon to complete, such as:

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

Licensing and certification requirements for dental assistants vary by state, so consult with the Alabama dental board for your state’s regulations. Assistants handling X-ray machines more than likely will need to be certified and licensed. A large number of dental assistants who are either required or decide to become certified take the Certified Dental Assistant (CDA) exam offered by the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB).

Dental Hygienist and Assistant Training Options

Dental assistant courses are available at Clayton AL area junior colleges as well as trade or vocational schools. The most common credential acquired is the certificate, which generally takes about a year to finish. There are fewer Associate Degree programs available, and they provide a more extensive education, including general subjects in addition to the dental assistant classes. As a result of the added responsibility as compared to an assistant, dental hygienists working in dental practices are usually required to have an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. These programs can take anywhere from 2 to as long as 3 years to complete and must be accredited by the CDA in virtually every state. They are also offered in Clayton AL area trade schools and community colleges. Whether you are interested in training as a dental assistant or hygienist, there will be a clinical aspect to the training as well. Some programs also sponsor internships with local dental practices or dentists.

Online Dental Hygienist Training Programs

attending dental hygienist school online in Clayton ALEnrolling in an online dental hygienist school may be a good option for obtaining your education. Just keep in mind that the classes will not be 100% online, since there will be a clinical component to your training. But the rest of your classes will be available by means of your desktop computer in the convenience of your Clayton AL home or elsewhere on your laptop or tablet. For those working while attending college, online dental programs make education far more accessible. Some may even offer lower tuition fees than their on-campus competitors. And added expenses such as for books, school supplies and commuting may be reduced as well. The clinical training can typically be performed at a community dental practice or in an on-campus lab. With both the online and clinical training, everything needed to receive the appropriate education is provided. If you have the dedication for this method of education, you may find that enrolling in an online dental hygienist college is the best choice for you.

Topics to Ask Dental Hygienist Schools

After you have picked the dental specialty and type of credential you wish to earn, you can start the process of comparing Alabama programs and schools. As we covered at the start of this article, a number of students begin by checking out the cost and the location of the schools. Possibly they search for some online options as well. Even though these are important initial points to consider, there are a few additional questions that you need to ask of the Clayton AL area colleges you are looking at in order to reach an informed decision. Toward that end, we have provided a list of questions to help you with your due diligence and ultimate selection of the right dental hygienist college for you.

Is the Dental School Accredited? There are a number of valid reasons why you should only choose an accredited dental hygienist program. If you are intending to become certified or licensed, then accreditation is a condition in nearly all states. To qualify to take the Certified Dental Assistant exam, your dental school must be accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CDA). Accreditation also helps guarantee that the training you get is comprehensive and of the highest quality. Employers in Clayton AL often prefer or require that new hires are graduates of accredited colleges. And last, if you are applying for financial aid or a student loan, frequently they are not available for non-accredited Alabama schools.

Is The Appropriate Dental Program Offered? You can decide to train to become a dental hygienist or a dental assistant, just verify that the Alabama school 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 have a career as a hygienist, the majority of Clayton AL dental practices require an Associate Degree in dental hygiene. More advanced degrees, although not common, are available. However, bear in mind that even if a college has an exceptional 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 solely interested in a dental hygiene degree, clearly it would not be the best school for you.

Is Enough Practical Training Included? Clinical or practical training is an essential portion of any dental training program. This holds true for the online college options as well. Many dental colleges have associations with local dental practices and clinics that provide practical training for their students. It’s not only important that the school you enroll in offers sufficient clinical hours but also provides them in the kind of practice that you subsequently would like to work in. For example, if you have an interest in a career in pediatric dentistry, check that the Clayton AL school you select offers clinical rotation in a regional dental office that focuses on dental treatment for children.

Are Internships Available? Ask if the dental programs you are looking at sponsor an internship program. Internships are undoubtedly the ideal method to get hands-on, clinical experience in a real Clayton AL 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 look good on resumes as well.

Is Job Placement Help Provided? Many students that have graduated from dental hygiene programs require assistance obtaining their first job. Find out if the schools you are researching have job assistance programs, and what their job placement rates are. Programs with higher job placement rates are likely to have good reputations within the Clayton AL dental profession in addition to large networks of contacts where they can refer their students for internships or employment.

Are the Classrooms Small? Find out from the Alabama colleges you are reviewing how big typically their classrooms are. The smaller classes generally offer a more personal atmosphere for training where students have increased access to the teachers. On the other hand, larger classes tend to be impersonal and offer little individualized instruction. If feasible, find out if you can attend a few classes at the school 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 programs can fluctuate in cost depending on the duration of the program and the amount of practical training provided. Other factors, such as the reputations of the schools and whether they are public or private also come into play. But besides the tuition there are other substantial costs which can add up. They can include expenses for such things as commuting and textbooks as well as school equipment, materials and supplies. So when analyzing the cost of schools, remember to include all of the costs associated with your education. Most schools have financial assistance departments, so be sure to ask what is offered as far as loans, grants and scholarships in Clayton AL.

Are the Classes Accessible? Before selecting a dental school, you need to confirm that the hygienist program furnishes classes that suit your schedule. This is particularly true if you continue working while getting your education and need to attend classes near your Clayton AL home in the evenings or on weekends. And even if you select an online program, you will still have to schedule your clinical training classes. Also, while addressing your concerns, ask what the make-up protocol is if you should need to miss any classes because of illness, work or family responsibilities.

Why Did You Want to Be a Dental Hygienist?

When prepping to interview for a Dental Hygiene job, it's important to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the questions that hiring managers often ask Dental Hygienist prospects is "What drove you to decide on Hygiene as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not merely the private reasons you might have for becoming a Dental Hygienist, but also what qualities and abilities you have that make you good at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining primarily to Hygiene, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you should ready several strategies about how you want to respond to them. Because there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the abilities you have that make you an outstanding Dental Hygienist and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but jot down a few ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can help you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.

Pick the Right Dental Hygienist School near Clayton AL

Picking the right dental hygienist program is essential if you want to take the CDA exam or, if mandated in your state, become licensed. As we have covered, there are numerous options offered to acquire your training and it takes a fairly short amount of time to become a dental hygienist. You can acquire your formal training through dental programs at community colleges, vocational schools, technical institutes and trade schools. Graduates of these schools usually obtain an Associate Degree. Dental Hygienists typically require about 2 years of studies prior to entering the work force. When earning a degree you can choose to attend classes online or on-campus. Whichever mode of education or credential you elect to pursue, by asking the questions presented in this article you will be better prepared to make the ideal choice. And as a result, you will be ready to commence your journey toward becoming a dental hygienist in Clayton AL.

A Bit About Clayton Alabama

Clayton, Alabama

Clayton is a town in and the county seat of Barbour County, Alabama, United States. The population was 3,008 at the 2010 census,[3] up from 1,475 in 2000.[4]

Clayton has been the county seat since 1834, two years after the creation of Barbour County. Clayton is located geographically in the center of the county. The town was located at the headwaters of the Pea and Choctawhatchee rivers on the historic road from Hobdy's Bridge over the Pea River to Eufaula on the Chattahoochee River. By 1818, there were a few settlers in the area around Clayton, but settlement began in earnest around 1823. The town was named for Augustine S. Clayton, a Georgia jurist and congressman. Clayton became the county seat of Barbour County in 1833 and was laid out on a central courthouse square plan. The first Circuit Court was held in Clayton on September 23, 1833. The Clayton post office was established in September 1835 with John F. Keener as postmaster. Clayton, with a population of 200, was incorporated on December 21, 1841, by the Alabama Legislature. Its first mayor, after incorporation, was John Jackson.

Clayton has a rich heritage with four properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Clayton is also known for its Whiskey Bottle Tombstone, which was featured in Ripley's Believe It or Not!.[5]

Governor George Wallace was born in nearby Clio and began his legal and political career in Clayton.

 

 

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