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Embarking on a dental hygienist career may seem intimidating at first. Although not a dentist, you’ll receive comprehensive training to identify and address dental issues. With the dentist’s supervision, initial fears quickly fade away.
The benefits of pursuing a dental hygienist career far outweigh any reservations. As preventive care experts, dental hygienists undergo rigorous training and are licensed to provide clinical, administrative, educational, therapeutic, and research services. With a focus on promoting good oral health, these professionals work alongside general dentists, utilizing their specialized skills to deliver exceptional preventive oral care.
Consider the dental assistant profession as an alternative path to enter the dental field. By obtaining a dental assistant certificate, you can work directly under a dentist’s supervision, assisting in patient treatment and starting your career in this rewarding field.
Here are a few reasons why dental hygienist jobs will have you smiling brightly.
1. Great Job Security
In today’s job market, achieving true job security can be daunting. With frequent job changes, company transitions, and closures, stability is harder to come by. However, a dental hygienist career offers remarkable security, boasting a relatively low unemployment rate. Consider the stability and peace of mind that comes with pursuing this profession.Diving into a career as a dental hygienist might seem relatively scary at first. You won't be an actual dentist – but you will still have to be trained enough to spot and work on actual problems.Click To Tweet
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of dental hygienists will grow 17% from 2021 to 2031, much faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is expected due to a number of factors, including the aging population, increased awareness of the importance of oral health for overall health, and the expansion of dental insurance coverage. As a result of this growth, there will be a high demand for qualified dental hygienists. Dental hygienists typically earn a good salary and have a high level of job satisfaction.
The median annual wage for dental hygienists was $77,120 in May 2021. The highest-paying states for dental hygienists were Alaska, California, and New York. The states with the fastest job growth for dental hygienists were Utah, Idaho, and Colorado.
2. Flexible Hours
Having reasonable work hours is essential for meeting our obligations and pursuing personal interests. Dental hygienists enjoy the benefit of flexible schedules, accommodating family responsibilities, and personal pursuits. Some work at multiple offices, customizing their schedule to align with the demands of a busy dental practice. Many dental hygienists have the freedom to set their own work hours, ensuring a perfect fit with their individual schedules.
3. Higher Compensation
Dental hygienists are in high demand, and for good reason. They play an important role in the healthcare field, providing preventive care, diagnosing and treating oral diseases, and educating patients about oral health. As a result, dental hygienists are well-compensated for their work. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for dental hygienists was $81,360 in May 2021. This means that half of all dental hygienists earned more than $81,360, and half earned less. The top 10% of dental hygienists earned more than $110,000.
The job outlook for dental hygienists is also positive. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of dental hygienists will grow 17% from 2021 to 2031, much faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is expected due to a number of factors, including the aging population, increased awareness of the importance of oral health for overall health, and the expansion of dental insurance coverage.
4. You can be self-employed
As a dental hygienist, you have two career paths: working for a dentist or becoming self-employed. While supervision is still required, self-employment offers greater flexibility and the potential for higher pay. Explore the options available and determine the path that suits your goals and aspirations.
5. The work is exciting
Working as a dental hygienist is not only about “cleaning teeth”. Dental hygienists are also involved in educating patients on the best ways to brush and floss teeth, preventative care as well as which products to use.
“According to dentalhygienists.com, “a hygienist typically removes soft and hard deposits from a patient’s teeth; examines the gums and teeth to discern the presence of disease or oral abnormality; and strips the teeth of calculus (tartar), stains and plaque. A dental hygienist often performs as well root planing (a type of periodontal therapy), takes x-rays and applies cavity-deterring agents (fluoride or sealants).” – Careers in Healthcare
Are you still on the fence? Whether you’re contemplating career options in school or seeking a change, consider the dental hygienist profession—it might just be the one to bring a smile to your face. Explore the rewarding possibilities and embark on a path that brings you joy and fulfillment.