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Dental Hygienists: Alternative Careers to Consider

February 09, 2023 · 3 min read

Dental hygienists play a crucial role in maintaining the oral health of patients. However, many dental hygienists may find themselves looking for career options beyond clinical practice. Whether you are seeking new challenges, more flexible hours, or a change of pace, there are many alternative careers that you may consider. In this article, we'll explore several non-clinical career paths that you can pursue with your dental hygiene background.

  1. Sales and Marketing

Dental hygienists have a unique understanding of oral health and the products used to maintain it. This knowledge can be leveraged in a sales and marketing role, where you can use your expertise to promote dental products to dentists, dental hygienists, and other healthcare professionals. You could work for a dental supply company, or even start your own business selling dental products.

  1. Education and Training

Your expertise in oral health and hygiene can be valuable in an educational setting. You could become a dental hygiene instructor, teaching aspiring dental hygienists the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the field. You could also provide continuing education courses to licensed dental hygienists or develop training programs for dental offices.

  1. Consulting

As a dental hygienist, you have a wealth of knowledge and experience to offer. You could use these skills to provide consulting services to dentists, dental practices, and other healthcare organizations. This could involve advising on best practices for patient care, developing office policies and procedures, or helping dental practices improve their overall efficiency and effectiveness.

  1. Research

Your background in dental hygiene can also be valuable in a research setting. You could work in a laboratory, conducting experiments and developing new products to improve oral health. Alternatively, you could conduct research studies to better understand the causes and treatments of oral health conditions. Your research could lead to new treatments and therapies that improve patient outcomes.

  1. Administration

Dental hygienists who have a talent for organization and management may find success in administrative roles. You could work as a practice manager, overseeing the day-to-day operations of a dental office. This could involve managing staff, coordinating patient schedules, and ensuring that the office runs smoothly and efficiently. You could also work as a consultant, helping dental practices improve their management processes.

  1. Writing and Publishing

Your expertise in oral health and hygiene can also be valuable in writing and publishing. You could write articles for dental journals, develop educational materials for patients, or write a book on oral health and hygiene. Your writing could help raise awareness of oral health issues, promote good oral hygiene practices, and educate patients on the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth.

  1. Public Health

If you are interested in making a difference in the lives of others, you may consider a career in public health. As a dental hygienist, you could work for a public health organization, providing dental care and education to underserved communities. You could also advocate for policy changes that improve access to oral health care for all individuals.

In conclusion, there are many alternative careers for dental hygienists to consider beyond clinical practice. Whether you are seeking new challenges, more flexible hours, or a change of pace, there is a career path out there that is right for you. With your expertise in oral health and hygiene, the opportunities are virtually endless. By exploring these alternative careers, you can take your career to the next level and make a positive impact in the lives of others.

by Liza Sushko

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