Dental Hygienist Requirements

Work in the health field is probably one of the most quickly growing and secure jobs that we know of today. People are always going to need their health to be taken care of in a variety of ways.

For those interested particularly in working as a dental hygienist, the job opportunities, as well as the salary, are incredibly promising. But – what are the dental hygienist requirements? What does one need to do in order to become a practicing dental hygienist?

The answer to this is both short and long. In short? You need to receive education and training as a hygienist, and then you need to be licensed by the state. But there are a variety of ways in which you can go about fulfilling dental hygienist requirements.

One of the ways you can go about becoming a dental hygienist is through a vocational school that offers a certificate in dental hygiene. This will give you all the basic core education you’ll need to become a dental hygienist, as well as some hands on training to fulfill dental hygienist requirements for state licensing.

Another way to fulfill these requirements is to attend a community college or even a state university that will offer you your Associate’s Degree in Dental Hygiene. This degree takes approximately two years to complete and may go into more depth and require more clinical intern time than what a certificate course may require.

If you have the desire to, another option to fulfilling your dental hygienist requirements as far as education goes is to get your Bachelor’s Degree. This four year degree will require time spent in general education classes in addition to the core educational requirements for a degree in dental hygiene.

Degrees higher than a Bachelor’s Degree are generally for those who are desiring to work in a more research-oriented capacity, or for those who are seeking to become instructors rather than work in an office environment.

Once you have fulfilled the educational dental hygienist requirements, you’ll need to seek certification through the state in which you plan to work. Be sure that you are aware of requirements and laws for your particular state, as some states allow a dental hygienist to perform other duties – like administering anesthesia – while others do not allow this.

The licensing examination for your state will consist of two parts. The first is a written exam, testing your knowledge of dental hygiene and the procedures you have learned. The other half is a clinical examination, in which you are graded upon your actual performance in a clinical setting. Many times you will find that the school you have chosen through which to complete your education will either include the cost of licensing in the tuition, or they will at least make arrangements for you to be tested for your licensing.

There are a variety of ways in which you can complete your educational dental hygienist requirements, which makes it incredibly easy to find a solution that fits both your budget as well as your current life situation.

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