IS A CAREER AS A DENTAL HYGIENIST FOR YOU? Here are some answers to your questions!

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 IS A CAREER AS

A DENTAL HYGIENIST

FOR YOU?

Here are some answers

to your questions!

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FACTS YOU SHOULD KNOW

Infectious disease transmission can pose significant concerns in the dental workplace

All dental healthcare workers must understand the basic

principles of disease transmission, infection control, and safety to minimized the risks associated with exposure to

biohazardous agents.

To ensure an understanding of the risks presented and to

implement safe work practices, federal regulations require that all healthcare professionals participate in specific training in infection control practices for exposure to an handling of

biohazardous materials.

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FACTS YOU SHOULD KNOW

Upon entering Dental Health Professions, the students are given a training session that includes, but not limited to, an explanation of the Bloodborne Pathogens Standard, the

Exposure Control Plan, hazard communication, engineering controls, work practice controls and personal protective

equipment.

The Exposure Control Plan and the Bloodborne Pathogen standard are available to all students, faculty and staff in Programs’ Policy Manuals.

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WHAT IS A DENTAL HYGIENIST?

Dental Hygienists are licensed

professionals who provide preventive dental care and encourage patients to develop good oral hygiene skills.

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TYPICAL DUTIES

Evaluates and charts patient’s dental health and history

Administers infiltration anesthesia

Removes hard and soft deposits and stains from above and below the gum line and

polishes teeth

Applies topical medications to teeth and between teeth to help prevent decay

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TYPICAL DUTIES

Exposes, develops and interprets x-rays

Places temporary fillings

Removes sutures

Places pit and fissure sealants

Cleans, sharpens and sterilizes equipment

Monitors Nitrous Oxide Sedation

Infiltration Anesthesia

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Working hours range from 35 to 40 hours per week.

Dentists often employ hygienists for only two or three days per week.

It is not unusual for a dental hygienist to hold several part-time jobs.

WORKING HOURS

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What are the steps to

enrollment in the Dental

Hygiene Program?

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Complete and submit a York Technical College Application

Take the placement test or submit SAT/ACT scores

Submit college transcripts (if applicable)

Meet with an Admissions Counselor

Be accepted to the Pre-Dental Hygiene program

Work with your advisor each term

Meet requirements for program goal

Meet with a member of the Enrollment Services Team

Pay the $50.00 wait list fee

Pay the $100.00 deposit when seat is available

Maintain 2.0 GPR each semester

Fulfill entry criteria Physical Exam

Health and liability insurance

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FULFILL ENTRY CRITERIA

Physical Assessment

Proof of two MMR vaccinations AND Rubella titer is required or if no proof of MMR is available you must have titers for each(Measles, Mumps, and

Rubella)

Varicella (Chicken Pox) titer required

Proof of Diphtheria-Tetanus Booster (Last booster must have been received within the past 10 years.)

Hepatitis B vaccination is recommended (Documentation of declination is required if student does not have the vaccine.)

Proof of 2 step PPD within 3 months prior to entry of program is required.

Physician’s evaluation

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COURSES TO TAKE IN HIGH SCHOOL

Algebra

Biology

Chemistry

College Preparatory English

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 What job opportunities exist?

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Dental Offices

Schools

Hospitals

Civil Service offices

Mobile Dental

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What salary will I make after

completing this program?

Graduates earn $28-$30 per hour

locally and $30-$35 per hour in

Charlotte.

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THINGS TO CONSIDER

Curriculum is rigorous – requires extensive reading, study time and good time management skills- takes 21 months to complete

Program runs concurrently – starts only once each fall; if you withdraw or fail a DHG course, you have to reapply to be able to reenter

Critical thinking required on the job

Stress level – medium to high

Must be a team player as well as able to work independently

Very interesting and rewarding field of study

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MAKE AN INFORMED AND

REALISTIC

CHOICE

DENTAL HYGIENISTS HAVE GOOD SCHEDULES AND EARN A GOOD SALARY, BUT:

You might find yourself trying to polish teeth of a

geriatric client who forgot that it is necessary to brush everyday.

Or scaling hard deposits off teeth that you cannot see because of all the blood and plaque surrounding them

Or giving anesthetic (novacaine) injections when you might be “squeamish about shots”

And, you need to realize there are more harmful

bacteria in the mouth than any other orifice of the body.

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MAKE AN INFORMED AND REALISTIC CHOICE

You may work on patients with pus coming out from under the gum which gives off a foul odor.

You need to realize that every patient you see has the potential to transmit HIV, TB, or herpes despite what they tell you or how they look.

You may see patients, including children with badly decayed teeth and know they have no funding.

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 How much time should I

expect to spend in this

program to be successful?

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The program is very demanding!

The program is a full-time, Monday through Friday, daytime program.

Between the coursework and the clinical

rotations, successful students should plan to devote approximately 40 hours per week each semester to

their education.

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This schedule can make it challenging to be employed full-time while enrolled in the

program.

For students who must work, it is highly

recommended that they work no more than 20 hours per week.

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 How stressful

is the

clinical

environment?

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The program can be quite stressful.

Classroom material must be retained for the clinical setting where students are acquiring hands-on skills to make the connection

between theory and practice. Students must be willing to become motivated, independent learners and accept constructive criticism

while in the clinical setting.

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What are the physical

requirements for this field?

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Good hand dexterity

Use of feet to operate equipment

The ability to sit or stand for long

durations of time

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What type of special skills do I need

to possess in order to be a successful

Dental Hygienist?

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Responsible/reliable

Flexible/adaptable

Good communication skills

Like working with people and equipment

Strong interest in science

Able to apply principles of logical or scientific thinking

Able to interpret an extensive variety of technical instructions and forms

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MAKE AN INFORMED AND

REALISTIC CHOICE

The grading scale for the DHG program for both coursework and clinicals:

Students MUST maintain a MINIMUM grade point average of 80 in all DHG coursework in order to remain in the program.

A minimum of 80 is required in all clinical coursework. Below 80 is considered

unacceptable clinical performance.

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IN OTHER WORDS…

Students who earn any grade below an 80 in any Dental Hygiene course will not be eligible to continue.

It is very difficult for students to work

more than 20 hours per week and be

successful in this program.

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What are the

estimated expenses

for the program?

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Tuition & fees for five semesters (in county) $14,747

Textbooks $3,782

Uniforms $700

Universal Protection Kit $2,674

Instruments & Supplies $1,840

Liability Insurance $15

Health Insurance ( varies) $ 600

Physical Exam ( varies) $600

Eye Exam $75

Dental Exam ( at York Technical College) $35

Hepatitis B Vaccination (Required) $420

CPR Certification $50

National SADHA Dues $110

National Boards $400

Clinical Board Fee ( CRDTS / SRTA) $1500

Nitrous Oxide Certification $25

Infiltration Anesthesia Certification $120

Graduation Fee/Cap/Gown $35

SC Dental Hygiene Licensure $150

TEAS Test $86

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What is required to become a Dental Hygienist once I graduate?

Students must pass licensure exams in order to practice dental hygiene?

Continuing education is mandatory for re-licensure each year.

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CAN YOU

PICTURE YOURSELF

IN A CAREER AS DENTAL HYGIENIST?

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If so, you may have additional questions.

Please feel free to contact:

Edna Martin

Program Manager, at 981-7068

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