Mar 23, 2010
2
0
0
Status
Medical Student
Hey!


So here's the deal. I am barely getting started on any sort of dental schooling, but my main goal is to become an RDH. I can't seem to find anyone who is able to give me specific direction in this!

I have a load of different certifications and licenses and classes that are being suggested to me; however, I don't want to waste my time on anything that isn't necessary.

Is it helpful to become a dental assistant before beginning dental hygiene?
Are online classes worthless?
What about Medical Assisting classes? Do they apply to RDH in any way?
Phlebotomy?
Is it worth taking classes at a Community College first, or no?
Are there any scholarships that you know of?

Any other suggestions or helpful tips are appreciated.


I understand this is all probably elementary stuff to everyone in this forum, but I've just recently realized that dental is a career path I'd love to pursue and need help as I am brand new to all this!

Thanks for your help! :)
 

oae

New Member
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Aug 6, 2006
407
0
141
California
Status
Pre-Dental
I highly doubt that any of the above mentioned certifications/courses of study would contribute towards your dental hygiene goals.

Secondly, dental assisting would be extra wasted money and time. The best thing to do is find a few schools that have a dental hygiene programs in your area. Then investigate their websites along with all of their admission requirements. Most of them will have similar requirements but pay attention for the slight variations.

Once you figured out what you need to get into these program, analyze your game plan for the next few years to figure out how you are going fulfill all of the prerequisistes and requirements for these dental hygiene programs. Make sure your timeline doesnt consist of taking all your classes at a community college. You should be trying to take alot of your prereqs at a 4 year university if you want be competitive.

Last but not least.... everything comes downs to NUMBERS. If you get solid grades and a high GPA, then you'll win yourself a oneway ticket to your dreams. But if you waste your time fancying excessive extracurriculars and wasting hour handing out toothbrushes at the local charity at expense of your grades then forget about it.

Good luck
 

FreeFallin

7+ Year Member
Nov 20, 2009
379
1
141
Status
Dental Student
Hey!


So here's the deal. I am barely getting started on any sort of dental schooling, but my main goal is to become an RDH. I can't seem to find anyone who is able to give me specific direction in this!

I have a load of different certifications and licenses and classes that are being suggested to me; however, I don't want to waste my time on anything that isn't necessary.

Is it helpful to become a dental assistant before beginning dental hygiene?
Are online classes worthless?
What about Medical Assisting classes? Do they apply to RDH in any way?
Phlebotomy?
Is it worth taking classes at a Community College first, or no?
Are there any scholarships that you know of?

Any other suggestions or helpful tips are appreciated.


I understand this is all probably elementary stuff to everyone in this forum, but I've just recently realized that dental is a career path I'd love to pursue and need help as I am brand new to all this!

Thanks for your help! :)

Hi there! I've been an RDH for the past 3 years, and love it. Right now, I'm looking into dental school. Since I love dentistry, I want to try more now. But, I can still try to help with your question.

Dental assisting may be helpful as far as teaching you certain things, but if RDH is your main goal, I would suggest go straight to RDH school. You will also get a brief introduction about dental assisting materials, such as taking impressions, cements, etc., but not everything about assisting.

Medical assisting will only help in that you have a taste of the medical industry. Remember though that dentistry is another world and its own language.

You could take courses at a community college, and I know there are RDH programs out there at those colleges. For me personally, since I already have a BS degree in Biology, I did not want an Associate's in Dental Hygiene; I instead went to another 4-year university and earned my 2nd BS in Dental Hygiene. So, I got all of my prereqs at a 4-year university and none at a community college.

There could be scholarships out there. It depends on the schools. You just need to do some research because there are a lot of dental hygiene programs out there. Check www.ada.org for the accredited programs. Good luck in your decisions!
 
Oct 5, 2009
17
1
0
Status
Pre-Dental
Most schools just require prereqs like English, anatomy, pyschology. I don't think it matters where you get those from, CC or big university. If you can do real well at a CC and then work at a dental office or dental lab, I think you will be fine.

I've work in a dental office, and most of the girls do a bachelors from a dental hygiene school, after getting prereqs at CC. A couple are just doing certificate program from DH school, which require fewer prereqs.

If you work in a dental office or dental lab and do well in your classes, i think you will be fine.
 

coolslugs

Senior Member
10+ Year Member
Jul 9, 2005
797
25
261
Status
do you have a bachelor's degree? do you want one? if yes, then go and find a school that offers a BS in dental hygiene. if not, you can be a dental hygienist by enrolling in a program at a CC or a vocational school.