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Dental Hygiene

Associate in Applied Science

Program Overview

Since 1975, Delta College has had the reputation of offering the best dental hygiene program in the area. And, it's still true today, as 100% of graduates pass their licensure exams and find employment.

What's the role of a registered dental hygienist? You'll provide dental hygiene services and teach patients how to prevent dental disease. A registered dental hygienist provides care for dental patients under the supervision of a dentist. The preventive and therapeutic treatments and services are prescribed by the dentist.

Treatment and services provided by a registered dental hygienist are: scaling and root debridement; application of topical fluoride for the prevention of tooth decay; sealants, impressions, prepare diagnostic models; expose dental radiographs; provide instructions for patient self-care and nutritional counseling; and perform laboratory procedures. Duties of registered dental hygienists do vary from state to state. In Michigan, registered dental hygienists also provide local anesthesia and nitrous oxide to patients 18 years of age and older.


Earning Potential

This career has grown by 1% over the last 2 years, and is expected to remain the same over the next 10 years. The registered dental hygienist may choose employment in a general or specialty dental practice, schools, clinics, hospitals, HMOs, public health or governmental agencies. They may also be employed in the area of management, research, sales, consulting or education.

In this field, it is estimated you could earn $57,648 a year.


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Likely Careers

  • Dental Hygienist

 

  • Dental Faculty
    Amazing faculty 

    At Delta, you get small classes, professors who see your potential and resources to help you succeed. Delta professors are here to teach. And, they're really good at it.

    Learn More about faculty

About Delta's Program

The dental hygiene program is a highly competent professional program adhering to comprehensive outcomes, competencies and objectives. Delta's dental hygiene faculty members are committed to creating an educational environment that facilitates your growth in knowledge and skills, while developing your full potential. 

The program is rigorous. Prior to entering the dental hygiene program, you will complete 30-34 credits of prerequisite courses. The dental hygiene program is five semesters and four of the five semester are 18 credit hours. The student will attend labs, clinics and classes approximately 35 hours per week. The student will need to commit to many hours of study per week as well as completing tests, assignments, projects and papers outside of class.

Accreditation

The Dental Hygiene Program is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA).

Commission on Dental Accreditation
211 East Chicago Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60611
800-621-8099 or 312-440-4653

Program application process

Getting your degree in a health field is unique compared to other Delta programs. You must first take your prerequisite core courses, and then you'll apply for validation.

What's validation?
The Registrar's Office validates your prerequisite courses to confirm you are eligible to begin the clinical portion of your program.

Success tips

  • Declare the Dental Hygiene program.
  • Meet with your advisor regularly. Stay on track with what you need to do to apply.
  • Apply for validation with the Registrar's Office once you've started your final semester of prerequisite courses.
  • Stay connected for important updates from Delta.
Program goal and competencies

Dental hygiene program goal
The program will provide career education to prepare entry-level dental hygienists.

Dental hygiene program competencies

  • Assess, plan, implement and evaluate dental hygiene services and treatment to individuals and the community.
  • Assess, analyze and incorporate evidence-based decision making in the management of patients/clients for continuous lifelong learning.
  • Manage infection and hazard control.
  • Manage medical emergencies.
  • Participate in professional events in the community and model professional behaviors including ethical, legal, interpersonal skills and professional appearance.
  • Solve problems individually and in a team environment.

Infection control
As a student dental hygienist, during patient treatment, there is a risk of exposure to blood, saliva, aerosols and punctures. Therefore, during the program, the student will learn about various diseases and how to prevent transmission of disease both to patients and yourself.

Program outcomes

Board examination pass rates

  • 2013 Graduates 100%
  • 2014 Graduates 100%
  • 2015 Graduates 100%

 Licensure rates

  • 2013 Graduates 100%
  • 2014 Graduates 100%
  • 2015 Graduates 100%

Employment rates
Full-time or Part-time employment six months after licensure.

  • 2013 Graduates 100%
  • 2014 Graduates 100%
  • 2015 Graduates 100%

Source: Results from Board examiners, personal contact.

Why you should choose Delta

State-of-the-art equipment

In 2013, the dental area was completely renovated. The new dental clinic is a state of the art facility.

Student success

The dental hygiene program was developed in 1975 and has a history of student success. The dental hygiene program is fully accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). The students are successful in passing the five board examinations that are required for licensure as a dental hygienist.

Transfer opportunities
 

One of the very best things about Delta College is your ability to start here and go anywhere. And, in the process, save thousands (and thousands) of dollars. It's a smart choice to get your associate's and then transfer on!

In fact, if you're interested in earning a bachelor's in Dental Hygiene or Allied Health Sciences you have options by coming to Delta first, and then transferring.

  • Dental Hygiene - University of Detroit Mercy
  • Allied Health Sciences - Ferris State University

Visit transfer agreements and guides to see the whole list of transfer opportunities.

Facts & Figures

100 percent

100% of dental hygiene students find jobs when they graduate.

Toohbrush

100% of dental hygiene students pass their national and state licensure exams. Go Delta!


Related Programs

Delta College offers over 150 degree, certificate and training options. Continue exploring and advancing your education with these related programs: