Dental Hygienist

One associate's or bachelor's degree, plus one local and national licensing exam later, dental hygienists enjoy a strong-work balance. Not to be confused with their dental assistant peers, these professionals -- 98% are women -- will only see the demand for their services increase.

Dental Hygienist Salary Comparison

$72K
Dental Hygienist
$35K
Dental Assistant
$30K
Medical Assistant

Types of Degrees

A.A.S. (2-3 years)

Bachelor's (4 years)

Master's (6 years)


Read more to find the differences between each degree.

What separates a great hygienist from an average one?

"Individualized care for each patient and the continual self-evaluation, along with a commitment to do the absolute best you can for each and every patient. Really caring. Doing the right thing even when it is never going to be noticed."

Mary Cerney

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Dental Hygienist Career News & Analysis

Best Cities to Be a Healthcare Professional

Healthcare in the U.S. is a multi-trillion dollar industry. It’s also a growing field for many lucrative careers. Read More

What's It Like Being a Dental Hygienist?

Anastasia Turchetta has spent 28 years as a registered dental hygienist in three states, so she has her fair share of stories. Like the... Read More

Best Cities for Dental Hygienists

Dental hygienists are often confused with dental assistants, but in actuality hygienists perform teeth cleanings and examiniations as... Read More

Going to School to Be a Dentist -- Professor Q&A

Nadeem Karimbux was one of about 40 students at Harvard University's presitigous dental school when significiant curriculum changes were... Read More

What It's Like Being a Dentist

There are some professions that all of us feel familiar with, even if we've never lived them personally. At least, this is David Blackman... Read More