Dental Hygienist Careers - Facts Sheet
Dental hygienist careers rank among the nation's fastest-growing professions. An aging population and a greater demand for health care services are the reasons for the trend. Dental hygienists careers and job opportunities are expected to grow thirty percent through 2016. This will mean about 50,000 additional jobs.
Dental hygienist careers are health care positions that require clinical training and certifications. A dental hygienist is a licensed oral health professional trained to render educational, preventive and therapeutic services. The dental hygienist works in close cooperation with the dental health care team.
They perform routine examinations of a patient's teeth and gums. The dental hygienist performs common procedures such as applying sealants, cleaning and polishing teeth. Often, they work alongside dentists and operate machinery.
Requirements for a Dental Hygienist Career
Dental hygienist job applicants are advised to list the services they trained to perform in their dental hygiene resume.
To become a dental hygienist in the US, graduates of a dental hygiene course need a license to practice. Dental hygiene licenses are granted by individual states. Licensing requirements vary across different states. Applicants must inquire from a state's licensing authority for specific application requirements.
To obtain a license, the applicant must graduate from an accredited dental hygiene course and pass the National Board Dental Hygiene aside from the state clinical board examinations.
These are some additional requirements when applying for a license.
- Completion of a jurisprudence exam
- Proof of CPR certification
- Letters of recommendation from dentists licensed in the same state
- Official transcripts from high school and colleges attended
- Official confirmation of the absence of a criminal record
- Official letters from the boards of dentistry where licensure is held
Armed with a course certificate of completion and a license, a job applicant can now pursue a dental hygienist career. An impressive dental hygiene cover letter mentions not only services but training received for specializations.
Employment for Dental Hygienists
Dental hygienist careers may be found in various public and private settings. Hygienists may find employment as clinicians, educators, administrators, managers, health advocates, and consultants. Some employers of dental hygienists are private dental offices, public health clinics, hospitals, schools or nursing homes.
Dental hygienist salary figures vary according to area, type of employer, education and work experience. They may be paid hourly, daily, monthly, or on a commission basis.
Benefits such as vacation leaves and medical/dental coverage are for those who work full-time in schools, public health services, the federal or state organizations.
Over half of hygienists work part time on flexible schedules. Typically, they work for only two or three days weekly.
There were about 174,100 dental hygienist jobs in 2008. A hygienist may work for a number of employees. So there are more jobs than hygienists. About 96 percent of dental hygienists worked in dental offices. A very small percentage were in employment services, physicians’ offices, or other industries.
Through the years, dental care has improved resulting in an aging population retaining their teeth. Preventive dental care is a service in increasing demand. Dental hygienist careers face a bright outlook for the coming years.
Become a Dental Hygienist |