Dental Hygienists: Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

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Dental Hygienists career information
pros and cons of being a Dental Hygienist

Dental Hygienists

clean teeth and examine oral areas, head, and neck for signs of oral disease. May educate patients on oral hygiene, take and develop x rays, or apply fluoride or sealants.

$75500
Salary
79%
Job Satisfaction
Not Too Hard
Becoming One
High
Job Growth
Suitable Personality

Dental Hygienists

Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and More


In this career summary, you will find out what the job of a Dental Hygienist is about and what it is like.

After reading this, you will have a good idea on what the job is about and decide if this is the right career for you.



Job description

Dental Hygienists clean teeth and examine oral areas, head, and neck for signs of oral disease. May educate patients on oral hygiene, take and develop x rays, or apply fluoride or sealants.


    Read more about what does a Dental Hygienist really do at work and what is it like being and working as one.




    Become one

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    Salary

    Average salary
    $75500 per year

    Average hourly wage
    $36 per hour


    Dental Hygienists with little to no experience tend to make between $51930 and $62490 while the more experienced ones can earn over $89610 per year.

    Top 5 paying statesHourlyAnnual
    AK$55$114,320
    CA$48$100,830
    WA$44$90,690
    AZ$41$85,890
    NJ$41$85,860

    One of the easiest ways to increase your salary as a Dental Hygienist is to move to a higher paying state like AK. Right now, the highest paying states for Dental Hygienists are AK, CA, WA, AZ and NJ.

    However a higher pay at AK doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the living expenses at AK might be twice as high than where you are currently at now.

    Three other factors that can increase your salary as a Dental Hygienist is the degree you hold, the industry you work in and lastly the company you work for.



    Requirements

    Recommended degree level
    Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)

    We asked other Dental Hygienists what degree they had when they got the job and most of them said they had an Associate’s Degree followed by a Bachelor’s Degree.

    Other than that, we also asked them what did they major in and here are the most popular majors that came up.

    Dental Hygiene/Hygienist

    Read more about how to become a Dental Hygienist and the degree, training and education you need.



    Pros and Cons

    Here are some of the pros and cons of being a Dental Hygienist.

    PROS
    Suitable for people who likes to help and teach others
    Suitable for people who values relationships between co-workers and customers and wants to work in a friendly non-competitive environment
    This career is perfect for people who love to work indoors.
    It is not too difficult to get into this career. Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for this career.
    Short working hours (Less than 40 hours per week)
    CONS
    Not suitable for people who likes to work with designs



    What is the job like

    Job satisfaction
    79%

    Is this job meaningful
    78%


    79% of Dental Hygienists said they were satisfied with their job and 78% said they feel like their job is making other people’s lives better.



    Is this right for me

    Best personality for this career
    The Helpers and The Builders


    You can read more about these career personality types here.

    People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with, communicating with, and teaching people. They like helping or providing service to others..

    They also like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.



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