Dental hygienics is a quickly growing field with significant opportunities for individuals seeking an interesting field with frequent interpersonal contact and hands-on technical application. Individuals pursing a career in dental hygienics should seek out specialized training programs to meet their educational goals and help them prepare with a combination of lecture courses and clinical application. Dental hygienists are an integral part of promoting dental health in private and community dental clinics and are projected to have strong earning potential. Dental hygienists often spend significant time with clients, providing dental cleanings, explaining dental procedures and ensuring clients understand post-treatment dental care and answering questions and concerns.
In Florida, dental hygienists are required to have successfully graduated from a dental hygiene training school or college that is accredited by the American Dental Association, or other recognized dental agency. Graduates from an accredited school may receive either an Associates or Bachelor's in Science or Dental Hygienistry. Graduates from non-accredited schools may still pursue a dental hygienist license if they have received a dental school diploma equivalent to a D.D.S or D.M.D, and have completed 4 years of post-secondary dental education.
Dental programs in Florida are likely to cover the following fields in either lecture or clinical practice: dental hygiene concepts, general education core classes, technical dental procedures, public and community health, and dental facility processes. Most programs require a set amount of clinical hours practicing procedures on volunteers and patients in a treatment facility as a requirement for graduation. Many programs will focus on core studies the first year and transition to technical and clinical studies in the second year.
Upon graduation, individuals seeking their dental hygienist's license are required to successfully pass both the National Board Examination and the state-specific Florida State Licensing Examination. Florida also requires applicants to attend a two-hour course regarding preventing medical errors every two years and each individual must be certified in the delivery of CPR and AED administration.
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