Dental hygienist vs Dentist Watch

dr junior
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i was just wondering which is better. dental hygiene course is 3 years whereas dentistry is 5 years. Also dental hygiene course is easier to get into, which require lesser qualifications than dentistry. Also the pay is good for dental hygienist £28 - £35 per hour, which u can choose ur own hours and shift. hygienist can make 25k - 50k +, whereas dentist make 30k-90k +. dentist's can set their own business quickly and become their "own boss", which they can make huge amount of money. however dental hygienist can't have their own buisiness, but can become private which the pay isnt no where near the dentist's. also in future there may be too many dentist's which may result in hygienists getting jobless or redudant as dentist wouldnt need them anymore.

whats your opinion?[/SIZE]
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jasonwhitham_2006
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(Original post by dr junior)
i was just wondering which is better. dental hygiene course is 3 years whereas dentistry is 5 years. Also dental hygiene course is easier to get into, which require lesser qualifications than dentistry. Also the pay is good for dental hygienist £28 - £35 per hour, which u can choose ur own hours and shift. hygienist can make 25k - 50k +, whereas dentist make 30k-90k +. dentist's can set their own business quickly and become their "own boss", which they can make huge amount of money. however dental hygienist can't have their own buisiness, but can become private which the pay isnt no where near the dentist's. also in future there may be too many dentist's which may result in hygienists getting jobless or redudant as dentist wouldnt need them anymore.

whats your opinion?[/SIZE]
To be perfectly honest they are both the same but as i have a sister who is doing dentistry, well hopes to.... do dentistry as she says it would be more helpful towards your career aim.

From my POV it would be better for u to do dentistry because that means you are going to become more specialised.

Hope that helps.
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Nirav1
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(Original post by jasonwhitham_2006)
To be perfectly honest they are both the same
mate, to be perfectly honest, they are definatey not the same..and telling him to do dentistry because ur sister wants to do it, is hardly helping him..
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Grey
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It all depends on your liking.

Dentistry is a hefty course, really demanding and stressful, but you get to perform more types of treatment, provide advise to patients and gain more responsibility over their health, also your open to a lot of variation in a career path-orthodontics, maxfax etc.

As a dental hygenist you will be performing a very limited amount of treatment but it is a lighter work load for a similar pay plus I reckon it is less stressful and some people don't like having the huge responsibility of a business to look after so it is good if you like to move around a lot and freelance.

Just depends what you want really.
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!pooja!
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hey! i've applied for dental hygiene and therapy this year at cardiff, birmingham, manchester and kings. i've been rejected from cardiff and manchester and am still waiting for a decision from birmingham and kings.

it really does depend on what you can see yourself doing. i'd suggest combined dental hygiene and therapy instead of just hygiene as you will get to perform more treatments and have better career prospects. go for work experience with a dentist and a hygienist/therapist then decide which you prefer.

i have found hygiene/therapy VERY competetive! this is due to the limited number of places on the course, eg cardiff has 8, manchester has 12. manchester had 222 applicants this year! also you are competing with dental nurses who have lots of experience.

hope this helps! if you have any questions let me know.
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dr junior
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thanks pooja for the reply.

i like both dentistry and dental hygienist/therapy as a carrer, however the difference is, that dentistry has alot of workload whereas hygienist have less. The good thing is hygienist still interact with patients, performing simple jobs such as fillings, extracting teeth etc which is great. Also the qualifications required to get into becoming an hygienists are not high i.e need mainly C's, however getting into dentistry is very competitive and need very very high grades. after some time i concluded i prefer to become dental hygienist.

my only concerns are the pay and job prospects. what is the average starting wage per hour and then after couple years work experiance per hour. Also i was told in couple years time there will be alot of dentists around, which will take place of hygienists, leaving hygineist unemployed, is this ture?

i have currently completed foundation year BSC dental technology (dental technician). although the job role is great as an dental technician, the pay is very low for the work needed be done. starting pay is 15k - 19k. couple years experaince pay is 24k - 30k, then also you are able to open your own buisiness selling dental appliances and materials to dentists i.e dentures, braces, brides etc, which is very very competitive especially as it may be outsourced. the pay is the reason i want to change the career.
i currently think i have not got the correct qualifications to do either degree's, as an dentist or hygienist therefore i am going to do Access course at MANCAT this year 2007, (hope i get in), so i will have the correct qualifications to do either.

my current qualifications are


Dental Technology Foundation year = Pending

BTEC National Diploma IT practitioners = DISTINCTION DISTINCTION MERIT (DDM)

GCSE = 8 A-C, including:-

ENGLISH = C
ENGLISH LITERATURE = C
MATHEMATICS = C
SCIENCE: DOUBLE AWARD = C
SCIENCEOUBLE AWARD = C
ART (GENERAL) = B
MEDIA STUDIES = A
HISTORY = C
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY = D
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!pooja!
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well ive heard of someone who got into dentistry after sitting the GAMSAT exam with no A levels, have a look into it- i think peninsula accept it.
i think hygiene/ therapy is a really rewarding job with good career prospects. as there are such limited spaces on the course every year, the number of hygienists/therapists in the country are low- making them well in demand. more practices are employing them as they can get on with the some routine treatments etc so that dentists have more time to perform major treatments and emergencies. this means lots more patients get seen in one day and thus the practice earning more money! hygienists are more specialised in gums and oral health eg periodontal diseases so dentists usually refer patients to them.
if you dont get into you access course id suggest working as a dental nurse then applying for hygiene/therapy next year- the experience is invaluable and it shows your comitment to the course. thats what i will do if i dont get in.
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fionak
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Hi,

I have worked in a dental surgery for many years so I hope what I'm about to tell you helps. In 2005 the law changed allowing dental therapists to work in private practice this is when most of the courses changed from dental hygiene to combined dental hygiene/theraphy. A dental hygienist/therapist will carry out most of the same treatments as a dentsit, but under his/her supervision. Also in 2005 the law changed allowing a hygienist or therapist to own their own practice if they so wish. The going rate of pay for one is usually £30 an hour any more than that and you need to look to bigger private practices in London's west end (Harley St) as I have worked all over including Harley St I know what is the norm with regard to salary. I consider it to be a very good job very stressfull at times as you run to a clock all day long and this takes some getting used to at first. You must expect the job to remain stressfull however as dentistry as a proffession in general has a high stress level.
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dr junior
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ty for the reply fionak, im just wondering i got 3 careers to choose from, first is dentistry, second is dental hygienist/therapist and thridly is dental technician. which would u say is most flexible and most pay and least stressfull.

could u tell me how much each of the three careers would earn annually from working private/commercial companies and if they opened their own business.

and finally i did get told there wont be many jobs in future for dental hyginist as there will be lots of dentists therefore not neededing hygienists?

thank you
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fionak
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Hi again,
Dentistry is the best pay with the highest stress as the buck usually stops with the dentist when it comes to other members of staff nurse, receptionist etc so they are sued more often than a hygienist/therapist its unheard of for them to get sued when you qualify as a dentist you become for two years what is called VT this means you will spend if your lucky the first couple of years in an NHS practice somewhere earning around 50k a year and thats if your lucky. You will not get a private practice place for many years as practice owners tend to like their associates to have a vast experience and an awful lot of post grad course and qualifactions under their belt. If your lucky enough to after many years get into a private practice then you can expect to earn about 90k a year if you own your own practice this will increase to about 150k a year with drawings. All of these salaries depend on the practice location and type of work carried out if you own a practice then will will have to accept to spend vast sums of money each year to keep ahead of advances in dentistry as this is where most of the money is in dentistry as an example this year alone we have spent 160k on equipment all of which was needed to keep ahead of other surgeries. A dental technician will only earn around 25k a year and thats if they are good at what they do however there is no where near the same amount of stress involved but the money is as you can see bad. As for Hyienist/therapist this for me was the best option as now the law has change it allowes us to work in private practice and there are only 380 in the whole country, it is stressfull you are resposible for your work like the dentist and it can pay very well. If you work in more than one practice you are also only allowed to work as self employed so you have the advantage as the dentsit to clam back lots of your salary each year. With regard to hygienist going to be in a few years out of work then I'm afraid this is rubbish, the number of hygienist will go down as they are now in most university's training Hygienist/therapist they will always be needed as they bring in big revenue to a practice more than most associates and as a result it is very uncommon to find a dental surgery without an hygienist. As a hygienist/therapist your have more freedom with your working week as you pick when you work hours/days etc, as there is such a big demand for them most practice owners are willing to accept what they can get there has always been a national shortage as I have been dong this for years and that fact has not changed yet. You will however find it very hard getting on one of these course's as they tend to take on dental nurses who already have a proven track record in surgery they look for manuel dexterity hobbies to prove there are no problems with your hands and some expierance in a surgery to see if you fully understand the role of a hygienist/therapist?.
Hope this answers everthing
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fionak
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I also forgot to mention that if you choose to become a dental hygienist/therapist and graduate as one and later change your mind and want to become a dentist then it's only another 18months to becoming one. if you do a hygiene only course then its another 3years to becoming a dentist. If you do not have good grades then you will find it very diffcult to become a dentist, as most of the students applying to universitys are choosing dentistry this means that the universitys can now choose to take only the best grades and this seems to be the case each year now. So you could go through the back door like alot of people I know have chosen to do by becoming a hygiene/therapist first.
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dr junior
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ty fionak very good information you have given. do you reckon if i graduate in dental hygiene/therapist course at university, would all universities especially university of manchester let me do another 18 months to graduate as a dentist. andf fianlly do dental hygienists make alot of money when they open their own practice and do they have to spend same amount of money on equipment as the dentists?
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fionak
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Hi,

Only some universitys are currently doing the 18mth course if you do go on to become a dentist as this is still kinda new at the moment this is due to increase in the comming years. Seening as it takes 3yrs to become a hygienist/therapist then there will probley be more universitys doing it by the time you finish. Hygienist/therapist do not earn any more or less than a dentist if they own there own practice as the revenue will more than likley be the same. The amount of money you spend on your practice regardless of who owns it depends on wheather you want to be ahead with new equipment etc and earn more money.

Lots of practices do not spend this kind of money on their practices, however they are also not as busy and tend to loose patients to the ones that do. Dentistry now more than ever is getting more cosmetic and you need to move at the same pace as technology in order to keep ahead of the game. This also applys to CPD this is furthur training as we are all off to New York in November for this and just got back from Vegas for the same reason. So the bottom line is you need to spend money to make it and contrary to what most people think dentist are certainly not rich by any means. Hope this answers everything
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abisav
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(Original post by dr junior)

my current qualifications are


Dental Technology Foundation year = Pending

BTEC National Diploma IT practitioners = DISTINCTION DISTINCTION MERIT (DDM)

GCSE = 8 A-C, including:-

ENGLISH = C
ENGLISH LITERATURE = C
MATHEMATICS = C
SCIENCE: DOUBLE AWARD = C
SCIENCEOUBLE AWARD = C
ART (GENERAL) = B
MEDIA STUDIES = A
HISTORY = C
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY = D
Could you please tell me where you are studying
Dental Technology Foundation year ? thankyou as i do not know where to study this.
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Manky
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I feel awful now....I feel like there's a lot of obstacles to become a successful dentist.....i just thought the work would be hard as a dentist but not stressful!

i aspired to do a degree in a dentistry and then a nhs practice asking me to work for them...and then work 9-5 and come home!

my dreams have shattered!
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the46gang
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Hi fionak ,

which unis allow you to do the add on course of 18 months to become a dentist if you are already a hygienist / therapist.
thanks for your help,
Peter
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fionak
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Hi Peter,

The uni orignally allowing this course was Dundee, however they are
no longer admitting anyone at present for the 18mth course as they are waiting for the trials to finish first. When the trials finish then I would assume that it will be the same as with any of the other course's that the will make it national hospital training. Dentist's usually train in teaching hospitals so I assume this is where they will launch the course when it's ready.

If you are ready to do a dentistry course then why not just sign on for that and not do the hygiene/theraphy course?. If you plan to just do the hygiene/theraphy course first then the dentistry course I would recommend you choose your hospital well, as it matters when you finish and are looking for a job as to where you trained. The best teaching hospital in the country is Eastman in london this is very very hard to get into but worth a try.

Hope this helps
Fiona
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dr junior
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ty very much for your response.

i have applied to 4 universities that do BDS dentistry and oral health course at manchester university. im just wondering i was told dental hygienist are usually for "Females", is this true or is someone trying to stop me from doing dental hygienist course?
and secondly if i dont get on niether dentistry or debtal hygienist degree, i will study dental technology degree. Do you have any information on the propectsof dental technician. i hearead theyhave got good pay rise from 30k - 45k+. and if as a dental technician i open my own buissiness after 7 years what do you reckon the chances are it will be sucessfull (copnsidering competition and outourcing). And what do reckon the average profit i would make annually?
Finally do you think the dentist, dental hygienist and dental technicians wages will continue to rise in future?
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fionak
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Hi,

Dental Hygienist's are mostly female as it usually is ex dental nurses that go on to be hygienist's. It is not only female however, as I have worked with male hygienist and male therapist before so there are men working in these professions now. I have noticed over the last few years that more and more men are applying for jobs as hygienist and therapists.

Dental technicians do not and have never as far as I know earned 30k - 45k, the usual salary is closer to 20k to 25k. If you open your own business then you are more likely to earn more as its your own business and you would have more drawings. There is always work for technicians so most business do well as there is a shortfall of labs as well. I don't know how much you can earn if you own your own lab as this is something I am not familar with. As for if the salaries will continue to rise for the dentist I think yes as the NHS is on it's last legs and won't be able to keep going and even if it did it can not compete with the results you get form private treatment. Dental hygienist wages have not increased for many years now and I don't think it will increase that much in the next few years as dental therapists are now what most practices will be looking for. Dental technicians wages I don't see changing much either as they have been on the same for many years.
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chiny
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hi!
i have aplied for dental hugienist and therapist degree course. i have recently recived invites for interviews. just wondering what you think i should prepare for....like what kinda questions am likely to be asked.
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