HealthHow to Become a Dental Hygienist

How to Become a Dental Hygienist


If you’ve ever wondered how to become a Dental Hygienist, read on for information about the pre-requisites, Career outlook, and salary for this profession. You can also find information about the job market in the field. Whether you’re considering dental hygiene as a career change or a second career, the information in this article is sure to be useful to you. Listed below are some of the most important things to keep in mind when selecting a program.

Become a dental hygienist

As a career in the health field, dental hygienists help patients with their oral health. This job requires a high level of dexterity, as they handle dental equipment in close quarters. Ideally, you should have at least one year of experience working in a dental clinic. In addition to dental clinics, dental hygienists work for dentists, hospitals, nursing homes, research facilities, and dental corporations.

To become a dental hygienist, you must have a dental hygiene license. The licensing process requires that you have postsecondary training in an accredited dental hygiene program. During this time, you will learn about research and theory to prepare for a career in the health care field. Depending on where you live, the job outlook can vary. But the average salary is $54,000 per year.


Before you can start studying for a career in dental hygiene, there are a few prerequisites you should have. These include being able to work well with patients and have good communication skills. You will be required to follow infection control protocols, and you must also be able to exercise critical thinking skills in the dental office. Dental hygiene schools typically train students to become competent, caring, and compassionate practitioners. There are also opportunities for students to work with diverse population groups and in a variety of health care settings.

Usually, dental hygiene schools require a 2.5 index or higher to be accepted. You may have to take some introductory courses to qualify for admission. Applicants with a GPA of at least 3.0 are given preference. The programs at the NYCCT are highly competitive and require a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. Despite this, students who have taken introductory courses at a university in New York City may still have the chance to be accepted into the program.

Career opportunities

A dental hygienist’s job can be as diverse as the work they do. Aside from private practice work, dental hygienists can work in hospitals, nursing homes, prisons, and public health agencies. They can also write for major publications in the field. Besides working in the dental clinic, a dental hygienist can work in marketing departments or run the website for a private practice.

Today’s modern society wants a career that’s not just a 9-to-5, nine-to-five job. The dental hygiene profession has become increasingly interdisciplinary, and dental hygienists are now often incorporated into a medical team. In this setting, a dental hygienist will focus on disease prevention and disease detection and may even serve as a member of a surgical team. Other options include educating patients, advocating for healthier dental care, and even acting as an advocate.


A dental hygienist makes an average of $78,866 per year. With a base hourly rate of $31.00, this represents a take-home pay of approximately $3,000 per paycheck. In addition to a predictable hourly rate, dental hygienists may also earn a commission that can range from 30% to 40% of the average patient appointment cost. For example, if a dental practice books eight patients at $200 each, the hygienist would earn an average of $120 in commission.

Salaries for dental hygienists can vary from state to state, as well as by region of the country. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) publishes statistics on employment and salary for various occupations, including dental hygiene. Salary figures are based on accumulated data from all employment sectors, so these figures do not represent starting salaries. Also, not all states and territories keep statistics. Therefore, if you’re interested in learning more about the salary potential for this profession, you can read this article.

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