The Hows of Working As A Dental Hygienist

American media company, U.S. News & World Report, came up with its annual list of 100 Best Jobs in the country for 2018. Securing the top spot is a software developer, while dentist dropped to the second spot from its number one reign last year.

Aside from dentistry, other healthcare professions were also listed including a dental hygienist which ranked 17th on the list.

A dental hygienist is a licensed healthcare provider who has received a licensed to perform select dental procedures. As a primary healthcare professional, a dental hygienist is registered with a dental association or regulatory body, trained and educated on the prevention and treatment of some dental issues, and can either work alone or alongside a dentist or other dental professionals.

As of May 2016, there are over 240,000 dental hygienists employed in the United States based on the data of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Of the total count, more than 194,000 dental hygienists work in dental offices. Aside from dental offices, dental hygienists also work at employment services, physicians’ offices, outpatient care centers, federal executive branch, among others.


How can I be a dental hygienist?

Like most healthcare professions, education and training are needed to work as a dental hygienist. In the United States, over 330 dental hygiene programs are offered.

To be a dental hygienist, an associate degree is needed. Although not necessarily required, some further their education and get a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree in dental hygiene. Before practice, they also need to secure a state-specific license, finish an accredited program, and complete a written and practical examination.

However, requirements may differ from one state to another.

Also, despite working in the dental field, dental hygienists who intend to pursue a degree in Dentistry will still need to undergo the same length of education, training, and residency.


How does a career in dental hygiene look?

A career in dental hygiene is promising. Being a dental hygienist is considered one of the best jobs in the country, ranking 1st in Healthcare Support Jobs and 17th among 100 jobs. Out of ten, dental hygienists got an average score of 7.4 in five component measures: salary, job market, future growth, stress, and work-life balance.

It has a low unemployment rate at less than one percent and is expected to grow by 20 percent in 2026, a lot faster than the average growth rate of most professions. More than 40,000 jobs are projected to be available for dental hygienists by 2026.

Although opportunities for advancements are below average, working as a dental hygienist comprises an average level of stress and a high rating for work-life balance. In 2016, about 50 percent of dental hygienists had part-time schedules.


How much does a dental hygienist make?

The salary for a dental hygienist is considered comfortable. It averages at 72,910 US dollars with the highest salary reaching 100,170 US dollars and the lowest being 50,870 US dollars. In 2016, the average hourly pay of a dental hygienist was 35.31 US dollars

Compared to other healthcare support jobs, a dental hygienist receives a comparably greater salary. A dental assistant only gets 37,890 US dollars average salary, while a clinical laboratory technician is paid 41,700 US dollars. A dental hygienist earns as much as a registered nurse in 2016.

3 Reasons Why Your Child Needs A Pediatric Dentist

Signing your child up for a dental appointment before he or she starts school is imperative.

Why? Back-to-school dental check-ups help ensure your kid’s oral health is at its best condition before he or she gets busy with school works and playing with his or her friends.

You don’t want your child to miss a school day because of a dental appointment, right? Missing a day in school means missed lessons.

But, you also do not want your child to miss his dental appointment, right? Missing a dental appointment means missed check-ups and treatments that can lead to the escalation of cavities, infection, and other dental problems which will then result in a missed school day or if worse, days.

You may be thinking that’s not possible. But considering children’s eating habits (They love candies!) and oral hygiene (They find brushing a bit boring and tiresome, you know), it’s not impossible. In fact, the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research reported that 42 percent of children have tooth decay in their baby teeth and 21 percent in their adult teeth.

If you have decided to bring your child to a dental office for his or her bi-annual check-ups, you are doing an excellent job as a parent. But, there are tons of dentists out there. Who should you tap into your child’s dental care?

The answer? A pediatric dentist.

What is a pediatric dentist?

Also called a pedodontist, a pediatric dentist is a dental professional who specializes in pediatric dentistry, one of the nine dental specialties qualified by the American Dental Association.

He or she takes care of the dental needs of children starting from birth until adolescence. This dentist is considered an expert in child’s dental care as he or she has additional education and training in pediatric dentistry.

A pedodontist is in-charge of diagnosing dental issues, promoting oral health, monitoring a child’s tooth and jaw development and growth, repairing a decayed tooth, and ensuring the functionality of a child’s gums, tongue, salivary glands, jaw, throat muscles, neck, and jaw.

Why should you choose a pediatric dentist?

Choosing a pediatric dentist is necessary because he or she understands your child’s fears, is knowledgeable in dealing with a child’s teeth, and creates a child-friendly environment.

Understanding your child’s fears

A pediatric dentist is more patient, friendly, and gentler because he or she knows that children are fearful of a new environment or meeting someone new. As a dentist in-charge of children, a pediatric dentist is aware and ready for possible scenarios that could arise during treatment.

Knowledgeable in dealing with your child’s teeth

Aside from knowing how to calm children and prepare them for a dental check-up or treatment, a pediatric dentist is a recognized expert and professional in dealing with a child’s teeth. Proof? He or she is a licensed pediatric dentist!

The training and education of a pediatric dentist are focused on the development, growth, care, and treatment of a child’s teeth. He or she could also share his or her knowledge to you, the child’s parent, so you could better care for your kid’s oral health.

Creates a child-friendly environment

The thing about taking care of a child is that it involves lots of patients, a mouthful of friendliness, and a bunch of gentlenesses. And pediatric dentists have all those traits. They create an environment conducive to your child by setting up child-friendly toys and games, movies, and treats to cheer your kid up during a dental visit.

Because of these efforts, your child’s fear is minimized, and he or she (including you) can relax while in a dental office.

Being A Dentist Is The Best Job And Here’s How You Can Be One

In 2017, US News and World Report chose being a dentist as the “best job.” Based on the salary, expected number of openings, advancement opportunities, and career fulfillment, being a dentist garnered the highest overall score of 8.2.

According to the list, dentists are well-compensated as they earn an average salary of 152,700 US dollars based on 2015 data. Their salary has also increased every year since 2010.

The highest salary of dentists is 187,200 US dollars, while the lowest salary of dentists is 68,310 US dollars. Delaware, New Hampshire, Alaska, North Dakota, and North Carolina are the best-paying states.

Dentists recorded average opportunities and stress level, and above average work-life balance. Despite working full-time and into evenings or weekends, the dental profession still gives dentists a lot of flexibility to craft the work-life balance he or she wants.

In 2016, more than 196,000 dentists are working in Dentistry where 21 percent are dental specialists, according to the American Dental Association. Dentist Honolulu Hawaii.


How can I become a dentist?

To become a dentist, a student must take high school courses such as calculus, biology, physics, chemistry, and statistics. A bachelor’s degree is usually a requirement in dental school, along with the Dental Admissions Test.

Typically, it takes four years in dental school and additional years of residency and specialization.


What are the different dental specialties?

Regarding specialization, ADA acknowledged nine specialties — periodontics, oral and maxillofacial radiology, orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics, prosthodontics, pediatric dentistry, oral and maxillofacial pathology, oral and maxillofacial surgery, and dental public health.

Periodontists focus on the inhibition, identification, and treatment of problems in the supporting and surrounding tissues of the teeth.

Oral and maxillofacial radiologists specialize in the production and interpretation of images and data. These images and data are then utilized to diagnose and manage dental issues.

Orthodontists are involved in the prevention, diagnosis, and correction of malocclusion, bite, and alignment of the teeth. Aside from straightening the teeth, orthodontists are also in-charge of treating neuromuscular and skeletal abnormalities of the orofacial structures.

Prosthodontists address tooth loss by creating artificial teeth via treatments and procedures such as dental bridges, dental implants, and dentures. With their help, a patient can restore and maintain the function, health, and appearance of his or her teeth and other oral and maxillofacial structures.

Pediatric dentists are in-charge of ensuring children’s oral health condition from birth up to teenage years.

Oral and maxillofacial pathologists are dentists who examine oral-related disease — their causes, processes, and effects. They also conduct research and diagnosis of the disorders and manage and treat oral and maxillofacial pathologies.

Endodontists focus on the diagnosis and treatment of the dental pulp and the tissues surrounding it, including the nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissues.

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are in-charge of dental surgeries of problems, injuries, and diseases of the oral maxillofacial region, both functional and aesthetic.

Public health dentists serve the community through the prevention and control of oral diseases, and the promotion of oral health by educating the public and conducting research for the benefit of the community.