The Dental Hygienist and the Continuation of Education
The dental field is one of the fastest -growing industries in America, and just like with most practices in healthcare, major changes happen every day. To keep up with the constantly evolving demands of the profession and new technologies that surface, it is important for you, as a Dental Professional, to continue your education. Not only will taking up continued education for Dental Hygienists offer you better career opportunities (because non-stop learning is always a plus), it helps you stay on top of the game.
Studying gives you access to the latest in treatment and diagnostic methods, which in turn will benefit
1. Continued Education for Dental Hygienists: Is it Required?
While requirements vary from state to state, finishing courses that provide continued education for dental hygienists is mandatory in most states except Wyoming and Colorado. Completing a specific amount of continuing education courses (CE) is a must for a dental license to be renewed. The required hours of continuing education range from 14 hours every couple of years to a max of 75 hours every three years. Check with your state to find out how many hours you need for license renewal.
2. Forms of Learning
Continued education courses come in many forms. The structure depends on the provider that you choose to go with. There are training workshops, conferences, certification courses, web-based lectures, and more. You can avail of these programs through community colleges, dental associations, and universities. Even for the busiest professional, there are many opportunities and ways to grow in the field. Online courses provide a way to study for those with non-flexible work schedules.
Though most courses require a fee, there are plenty of free CE credits that you can get through such things as professional publications or live dental webinars. An excellent source of free credits is this list of live webinars provided by Colgate Professional.
I am deeply passionate about the Dental Profession, and having made lots of mistakes, my experiences provide a great deal of information on what to do, vs what not to do! I recently presented a live webinar on Documentation and Risk Management and I provide in-office workshops on this topic, training the Team how to document to avoid risk and Clinical Systems Management for Increased Productivity and Stress Reduction.
One great way to find out the scope of learning available to you is to attend a major dental conference at least once a year. These gatherings usually yield tons of resources and CE credits to increase your knowledge of information on new technology and treatment procedures from professionals just like yourself.
3. Continued Education for the Dental Professional
Here are some examples of upcoming classes for you to attend, either in person or online. In light of the current pandemic, we listed down programs which are either online or hands-on but scheduled months ahead.
Local Anesthesia for Today’s Hygienist: Certification Course
A certification by an ADA CERP Recognized Provider, this course by the University of Florida Health will run from September 25-27, 2020. Accreditation for the hands-on course is 60 contact hours. All aspects of local anesthesia will be explored in this class, ranging from pharmacology to anatomy, as well as mechanics for providing competent pain and anxiety management.
Spring Mandatory & Core Training for the Entire Dental Team, Fall Mandatory & Core Training for the Entire Dental Team-Live Session
Offered by the University of Minnesota, this live session on May 8, 2020 tackles three essential topics for 6 hours of course credits. The three core subjects are: management of medical emergencies, infection control, and workplace ethics.
Nitrous Oxide for Dental Hygienists (Administering) and Dental Assistants (Monitoring)
The University of Cincinnati Blue Ash College with the approval of the Ohio State Dental Board offers eight hours of credit for the program.
The proper administration of nitrous oxide (monitoring for dental assistants) will be discussed on December 5, 2020.
ADA CE Online Courses
The American Dental Association offers a ton of online continuing education courses and recorded webinars for credits.
Some of the popular courses available for continued education for dental hygienists include ADA Infection Control and OSHA 2016, Pharmacology of Analgesics, and the latest, which is COVID-19 Infection Control Protocols & Procedures (a free recorded webinar).
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”
– Benjamin Franklin