You are accepted into dental hygiene school, yippie! Now what? I can speak from ten years experience that the main stress that comes from school is when you fail something. Either didactic failure or clinical, this is a huge stresser. Nobody finishes dental hygiene school and says "I loved it! I would do it again!". I took the dental hygiene program twice (my first private college went bankrupt and shut down) so I can speak from 'personal' experience that the program isn't easy. But you know what? It's well worth it!
When I was in school, the main thing that stressed me out was 'worrying' about failing a test or exam. When I passed that exam I was relieved and felt 100% better. More then half way into the program I developed some study skills, had a study group and found this was a huge help! Failing an exam is so stressful because this usually means having to pay to take another exam, and if you fail that one you are out of the program. The policies are different for every school of course but once you develop good study habits it will make your program so much easier!
As a new student it is the perfect time to develop such habits! Starting off right will serve you greatly and you can even help other students do the same.
1. Find a study place. Have you ever heard that you should use your bed for sleeping only? This programs your mind to fall asleep easier as soon as you hit the sheets. The same goes for your study place - pick the same spot if you can so it programs your mind for study time.
2. Minimize clutter and distractions. This means no checking Facebook, no mini breaks to browse online and no "doing laundry instead". Allot certain times for studying and stick to that. I used to plan my day per hour and would allow 3 hours of study time at the most. Turning off your phone is also a huge help :).
3. Get enough sleep. Studying all night DOES NOT help...I repeat, it does not help! Waking up at 2am to study for an exam for 8am DOES NOT help. Your body needs to rest and you need your sleep. Your brain can't function on only a few hours of sleep.
4. Study before play. If you keep putting studying off, you will dread it. Think of studying as learning something new and you need to do this to be the best dental hygienist you can be. If you plan to study after school, study first and then reward yourself for a job well done.
Dental Hygiene school is well worth it! It's worth the hard work and remember you can do it! If you need a pep talk you can email me anytime. I have been there and done it TWICE :).
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