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Dental Hygienists

Also called: Dental Hygienist, Hygienist, Licensed Dental Hygienist, Registered Dental Hygienist (RDH)

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What they do:
Administer oral hygiene care to patients. Assess patient oral hygiene problems or needs and maintain health records. Advise patients on oral health maintenance and disease prevention. May provide advanced care such as providing fluoride treatment or administering topical anesthesia.
On the job, you would:
  • Record and review patient medical histories.
  • Feel and visually examine gums for sores and signs of disease.
  • Examine gums, using probes, to locate periodontal recessed gums and signs of gum disease.

Knowledge

Health
  • medicine and dentistry
Business
  • customer service
Math and Science
  • psychology

Skills

Basic Skills
  • listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
  • talking to others
Social
  • looking for ways to help people
  • understanding people's reactions

Abilities

Hand and Finger Use
  • keep your arm or hand steady
  • put together small parts with your fingers
Verbal
  • communicate by speaking
  • listen and understand what people say
Ideas and Logic
  • notice when problems happen
  • make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information
Attention
  • do two or more things at the same time

Personality

People interested in this work like activities that include helping people, teaching, and talking.
They do well at jobs that need:
  • Concern for Others
  • Integrity
  • Dependability
  • Cooperation
  • Self Control
  • Adaptability/Flexibility

Technology

You might use software like this on the job:

Medical software
  • Henry Schein Dentrix Hot Technology
  • Patterson Dental Supply Patterson EagleSoft
Spreadsheet software
  • Microsoft Excel Hot Technology
Electronic mail software
  • Email software

Education

Education: (rated 3 of 5)
associate's degree or
professional degree
usually needed

Get started on your career:

Find Training Find Certifications Find Licenses Apprenticeship.gov

Job Outlook

Bright Outlook
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.
Salary
$77,090
$54,200
$104,420
Check out my state Local Salary Info Find Jobs

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See more details at O*NET OnLine about dental hygienists.