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Occupation Description:
  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.
Career Video:
  Video Icon  Dental Hygienists
  Open-captioning or video transcript included for the hearing impaired. Career videos brought to you by CareerOneStop. Copyright © 2017 All Rights Reserved.
Typical Tasks:
  • Clean calcareous deposits, accretions, and stains from teeth and beneath margins of gums, using dental instruments.
  • Feel and visually examine gums for sores and signs of disease.
  • Chart conditions of decay and disease for diagnosis and treatment by dentist.
  • Feel lymph nodes under patient's chin to detect swelling or tenderness that could indicate presence of oral cancer.
  • Apply fluorides or other cavity preventing agents to arrest dental decay.
  • Examine gums, using probes, to locate periodontal recessed gums and signs of gum disease.
  • Expose and develop x-ray film.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively..
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times..
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems..
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience..
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people..
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action..
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do..
  • Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures..
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction..
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar..
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders..
  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment..
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects..
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems..
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Education & Training:
  Associate degree
      View Related Programs on Connecticut's Education & Training ConneCTion site
License Authority for School Dental Hygienist-Teacher:  (License details)
  State Department of Education
Division of Teaching & Learning
Bureau of Educator Standards and Certification
165 Capitol Avenue, Room 243
P.O. Box 150471
Hartford, CT   006115 -00471
(860) 713-6969

License Authority for Dental Hygienist:  (License details)
  Department of Public Health
Health Care Systems Branch
Practitioner Licensing & Investigations Section
410 Capitol Avenue
P.O.Box 340308
Hartford, CT   006134 -00308
(860) 509-7603

Wage Information:
Region Average Annual Average Hourly Entry Level (hourly) Mid-Range  (hourly)
Statewide $83,968.00 $40.37 $32.01 $35.06 - $46.65
Bridgeport/Stamford $84,312.00 $40.54 $32.22 $34.58 - $46.72
Danbury $75,239.00 $36.17 $25.11 $32.24 - $44.75
Hartford $89,021.00 $42.80 $34.96 $37.38 - $48.16
New Haven $81,102.00 $38.99 $30.40 $34.12 - $45.39
New London/Norwich $77,224.00 $37.12 $29.77 $32.32 - $43.24
Waterbury $82,044.00 $39.44 $28.62 $30.03 - $47.06
Torrington $82,490.00 $39.65 $31.04 $33.08 - $46.85
Select a town to see its region Not sure which Region applies to you?

Occupation Outlook:
Region Employment Average Annual Growth Rate Average Annual Job Openings
2014 2024
State of Connecticut 3,840 4,230 0.9% 102
Chart of Growth Rate and Annual Openings   Employment in this occupation is expected to grow faster than average, and the number of annual openings will offer excellent job opportunities.
  N/A = Not Applicable, ***** = Over $60.00 per hour, ##### = Over $124,821
Similar Occupations:
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