Continuing Education for Dental Hygienists

Continuing Education Courses and Job Opportunities in Dental Hygiene

Individuals that pursue a career in dental hygiene will obtain a good paying and secure job with as little as an Associate’s degree or certificate. Dental hygiene programs are also offered at colleges, universities, community colleges, and trade schools. Dental hygiene is also known as one of the fastest growing professions in the country, and earning a Master’s degree will allow students to teach other aspiring hygienists the basics of the career field.

Typical Dental Hygiene Courses

Dental hygiene courses will vary depending on the institution and program a student is enrolled in, but some options for study include:

  • Preclinical Dental Hygiene
  • Pharmacology
  • Nutrition and Oral Health
  • Oral Pathology
  • Dental Materials and Methods
  • Community Oral Health
  • Oral Histology and Embryology
  • Dental Radiology
  • Clinical Dental Hygiene
  • Pharmacology
  • Principles of Periodontics

Individuals that wish to pursue a career as a dental hygienist will need to first obtain a license from the state in which they wish to work. This process generally requires that an individual graduates from an accredited program before passing an exam administered by the American Dental Association. A clinical exam is usually required by the state, and an additional exam on state laws in regards to dental hygiene may also be administered.

Career Outlook for Dental Assistants

According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook, the demand for dental hygienists is expected to increase significantly through 2014. This can be attributed to the population increase and the number of aging individuals that will be in need of dental care. Hygienists are also performing a number of new procedures and their responsibilities are increasing, so this will also increase the demand.

Average Salary for Dental Assistants

The US Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median annual income for a dental hygienist in 2009 was $$67,340.

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