Let’s face it, you can love your job from your head right on down to your toes. But loving your job? Isn’t going to pay the bills. The simple fact of the matter is that sometimes, you need to switch your career up a bit, and while you may have passions in certain areas, you may not always be able to make any kind of a decent living off the salary a street juggler would make. So, while you keep to juggling on the weekends, you’ll need something during the week to put food on the table. And if you’re considering becoming a dental hygienist, you’re in luck. A dental hygienist salary is good money, even for those starting out.
But before we get into what, exactly, a dental hygienist salary is, let’s talk about what a dental hygienist actually does to bring in the money.
A dental hygienist will be asked to, of course, perform routine cleanings for patients in a dentist’s office. They’ll also be asked to update patient records, to include checking what medications the patient is taking at that time. It is also a responsibility of the dental hygienist to educate patients in proper oral hygiene, nutrition relating to oral health, as well as specific preventive care that can be done at home. In addition, dental hygienists polish fillings, take x-rays, make molds, and in some states will also be asked to administer anesthesia. The title alone doesn’t quite encompass everything the dental hygienist does.
In order to become a dental hygienist, you’ll need to go to school. You’ve got options, of course, which vary from simple certification programs all the way on up to obtaining a Master’s Degree in Dental Hygiene, if that’s what you so choose. Most dental hygienists obtain an associate degree in dental hygiene and go from there. Those wishing to move into a more research-oriented specialization will obviously have to obtain even higher education, while you’ll mostly find professors and other teachers possessing Master’s Degrees.
Depending upon the specialization, the salary for a dental hygienist can vary. However, the average expected dental hygienist salary is around $64,000. This is nothing to balk at, when you think about other jobs with much lower expected incomes. There are also a wide variety of perks that come with the job – they’ll vary by employer – that you’ll have to consider when determining if you’re going to take the job.
This average can vary, especially when you start looking into those involved in research and those who teach. However, it’s a good income for a job that is expected to be around for a long time.
Much like visiting a doctor, people are going to need to visit their dentist on a regular basis. They’re going to need their teeth cleaned regularly and a dentist is always going to need a dental hygienist to assist with clinical procedures and administrative duties around the office. With a very good median income that’s continually increasing, as well as guaranteed job security, being a dental hygienist can be a rewarding career in more ways than one.