Pittsburgh Dental Hygienist Schools

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About Dental Hygienist Jobs

Dental hygienists are licensed professionals that work in dentist offices. Some dental hygienists can administer local anesthesia under the supervision of a dentist. The main procedure of a dental hygienist is to provide care to patients and educate on preventive oral health. At each session with a patient, the hygienist will review the patient’s medical history, take x-rays, perform an exam where they look for any diseases, and clean teeth, and provide fluoride treatments. They set up a treatment plan which includes follow-up appointments over a period of time. Dental hygienists can work in public settings such as nursing homes, day care facilities and public schools providing cleaning and preventive and educational services.

Becoming a dental hygienist requires three to six years of schooling depending on the degree earned. Hygienists can work in a dentist office with an associate’s degree but a bachelor’s or master’s degree will provide more opportunities such as teaching or research. A state license is also required. A dental hygienist needs to take a clinical and written examination administered by the American Dental Association’s (ADA) Joint Commission on National Dental Examinations.

There are many schools that provide degrees in dental hygiene. It is important to make sure that the chosen school is an accredited hygiene school. Hygienists will not be permitted to take the state license examination if the school is not accredited.

The career opportunities for dental hygienists are good. Dentists rely on hygienists to perform routine procedures and will often hire several to provide services to more patients. The average dental hygienist fresh out of school will earn $35,000 to $50,000 a year. The salary will vary depending on the degree earned, experience, and location. The American Dental Hygienist Association conducted a survey in 2009 which indicated that 50% of dental hygienists receive health benefits, paid vacation and retirement plans.

Dental Hygienist Schools in Pittsburgh

University of Pittsburgh
School of Dental Medicine
B-82 Salk Hall
Pittsburgh, PA 15261-1937
Website: www.dental.pitt.edu/students/dental_hygiene.php

Bradford School
125 Station Square Dr.
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Website: www.bradfordpittsburgh.edu/programs/healthcare

Sanford-Brown Institute
421 7th Avenue,
Pittsburgh, PA, 15219
Website: www.allalliedhealthschools.com/schools/ID4918/

YTI Career Institute
2900 Fairway Drive
Altoona, PA 16601
Website: www.allalliedhealthschools.com/schools/ID4811