How to Get a Dental Hygienist Job



If you’re interested in pursuing a career as a dental hygienist, there are several steps you can take to increase your chances of landing the job. Whether you’re starting from scratch or looking to transition into this role, here’s a guide on how to get started:

Educational Requirements:

To become a dental hygienist, you’ll need to complete an accredited dental hygiene program. These programs are typically offered at community colleges, technical schools, or universities. The Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) is responsible for accrediting dental hygiene programs, so it’s important to choose a program that meets the accreditation standards. The duration of the program is usually around two to three years, and it includes both classroom instruction and clinical experience.

Career Options:

As a dental hygienist, you have various career options to consider. You can work in private dental offices, community health centers, hospitals, or educational institutions. Some dental hygienists even choose to specialize in areas such as periodontics or pediatric dentistry. To explore different career options available to dental hygienists, you can visit websites like the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA).

Certifications and Licensure:

In addition to completing an accredited dental hygiene program, dental hygienists must also be licensed to practice. Licensing requirements vary by state, but typically include passing the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination and a clinical examination. Some states may also require additional examinations or certifications. The ADHA website provides information on licensing requirements and resources for dental hygienists.

Continuing Education:

Continuing education is essential for dental hygienists to stay current with the latest advancements in dental hygiene practices and technologies. Many states have specific continuing education requirements that dental hygienists must meet to maintain their licensure. The ADHA and other organizations offer continuing education courses, conferences, and resources to help dental hygienists fulfill these requirements and stay updated in their field.

By following these steps and continually improving your skills, you can increase your chances of securing a dental hygienist job. Remember to tailor your resume and cover letter to highlight your relevant education, clinical experience, and certifications. Additionally, networking with professionals in the dental field and volunteering can help you gain valuable connections and experience in the industry.


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