These days its hard to find 'older' and more 'experienced' dental hygienists who are passionate about this profession. I remember in school, even my instructors didn't seem to have a passion for it. Some did, but usually every chance they got they would add comments like "be careful who you work for," "make sure to start in a great office," "don't expect to get paid a lot right away," things like that. Not very encouraging! Right?!
Younger dental hygienists, and newer dental hygienists I find are extremely passionate! They are excited and ready to work. They are nice to their patients and ready to take on anything. I think those who have been working for 10+ years are burnt out and discouraged by the profession. The solid truths are we aren't being paid as much, we seem to have more responsibilities and less time per patient to do them, and our yearly association fees have gone up. I could go on here, but you get the idea.
However, I will be the first one to tell you that I love this job! I have been working for 12+ years now and I consider it my mission to inspire and motivate my students to love this profession too. Don't let anyone tell you how you should feel and how you should work. Be excited! This profession is wonderful and especially when you are first getting started there is so much to learn.
I will also tell you that working in one office over another will make all the difference! Unfortunately when you first start out you have bills to pay and will work anywhere, this is OK! Once you pay off those student loans though, if you quickly realize that office isn't for you make sure to move on. Perhaps you feel the staff never truly 'accepted' you, or you have 30 minutes per patient and you feel like you're working in a factory assembly line, maybe you don't get paid for no shows or cancellations, does your boss give you a major guilt trip when you take a vacation, or maybe you haven't had a raise in 5 years? I hear these stories all too often...
On another note, my famous line to anyone who knows me is - "If you aren't happy, change it, only you can." This rings true for your job. You work 40 hours a week, you need to love it!
If the dental office is stressing you out and you're working your butt off, change it! I'm not suggesting changing professions but you should try another office first. I can count on two hands hygienists I know personally who weren't happy in their jobs, changed offices and are thanking their lucky stars! They love it there and they have a newfound love for their career.
I tutor dental hygiene and dental assisting students for the board exam. More than that though, is I help them when they first graduate, pass the exam, and start working in an office. I guide them through what could be scary time for them. I am passionate in this profession and I want others to be just as excited and passionate as I am! Patients need 'happy' hygienists! You need to love your job for your patients if nothing else. I recommend this Full Dental Hygiene Resource Manual, you can print it out and keep it with you! It goes through everything you need to know when you start working in an office.
Remember, don't listen to what others may tell you - if they are unhappy in this profession it doesn't mean you have to be or will be! Dental hygiene is an amazing extension into the health care field - you will help people, make them less nervous and make someones day :). It's incredibly rewarding!
This FULL Dental Hygiene Manual includes 104 pages of periodontal cases, special needs conditions, AB's explained, common medications, eruption charts, wheelchair transfer information, oral pathology lesions, radiography, and more! Click here to learn more.
Feel free to comment on YouTube after watching if you like. Already getting a few comments on this video. Click above to view, or view here.
--I'm so glad to see other students talking because trust me when I say YOU ARE NOT ALONE! School is tough, seems impossible, and stressful. That's all an understatement but it will be worth it.
--It's actually really inspired me to start something new...perhaps a YouTube channel specifically for helping students get through school and push through the stress. Would anyone watch it? :)? Lets all get together, share your stories, your struggles and help each other out while in school. You CANT become a dental hygienist or assistant without getting through school right?!
Whats stressing you out? Clinical? Exams every week? Other students? Other TEACHERS?....it's a safe place here. Let's chat!
Hit reply and email me! Would you be interested in watching more videos? I will talk, and be open and honest. Have questions about an upcoming test? Teacher problems? Student problems? Sleep deprived? Need help? Need advice?
I would love to invite you all over here and have a major chat session about dental hygiene school life. Let's unwind and chat, get all the stress off your chest! SEE that you're NOT ALONE! But...I live in Woodstock ON and I have a feeling not all of you would come down here, so lets do a YouTube channel instead?
What do you think?
I wish I had someone to talk to when I was in school - I've said it before but I had the worst time. Not only having to take the program TWICE but I constantly felt I wasn't good enough. I failed a lot of clinic tests because I swear my one instructor hated me...I remember failing a final clinic exam because my arm was "too high". No joke, this is what she said. It was a test on scaling and I failed because the instructor felt my arm was too high and it would hurt me in the long run. I remember going to the clinical director and appealing the case, even she said "Andrea, I don't know why you're here this is just embarrassing. I'm signing you off as a pass...but keep that arm lower".
Can you IMAGINE? I remember for the appeal I had to come in on a Saturday, I had to book it off work (so I was losing money), travel an hour by bus to school..actually a bus and subway in total for her to pass me after a 5 minute conversation.
Don't get me wrong, I was thrilled to have that pass but I also knew she would pass me. I felt all along that other instructor failed me for a stupid reason. Did she have something to prove? I really think so.
Oops...did I say that?...sorry but it's true. I've always had a problem with authority though, especially when I know I'm right :):):). I wouldn't shy away from giving an instructor the evil eye when I wasnt being treated fairly. You should have seen me in school two years ago for Restorative Hygiene..same situations. I guess being 30 years old didnt change me haha. I am convinced one instructor in particular 'hated' me too that I even spoke to the Dean with how I was being treated unfairly. Seriously got me no where but I needed to speak my case. When all my classmates could see it and felt sorry for me I knew I had to do something.
Another story for another email? You bet...:). I have tons of them! I'm a tutor now so haha to them!
I wasn't alone, I know other students were feeling that way too.
How is your program/teachers/tests going for you???
I'm always here to listen!
*Original post from August 2014
Welcome to Dentalelle's Blog! Surprisingly this is my first blog post with Dentalelle even though we have been online for the past 5 years. Why do you ask? Truthfully I simply did not have the time and for students who know me, I do it all and I do it all myself :). NOW however, I do have time, or in other words I am making time! Let me start off by introducing myself and why I started Dentalelle Tutoring in the first place...
My story is quite an interesting one so read on! Basically when I started college for my dental assisting course, about 10 years ago, I realized after that first week how much I love anything dental and learning about oral health. I will always remember the instructor putting a stack of papers on my desk the first day, I took one and passed the remainder of this large stack to the student beside me. My instructor quickly replied "Oh no dear, this stack is for YOU..for the month". A month??!! Ok, wait a minute..what kind of program is this??!!
But, who are we kidding, I loved the fact that I would be learning a stack of information in a month and of course needed to memorize it for WEEKLY tests (yes you read right, we had WEEKLY tests).
11 months later I had graduated from dental assisting college and began working at an amazing office which employees currently 6 dentists. More about this office later, oh yes..I will be going into detail about what working has been like first as a dental receptionist, dental assistant, and now a dental hygienist. I need to save some information for my upcoming blog posts! It will be an exciting read for you all every week.
When I went to dental hygiene college, this is where I quickly realized how much I loved teaching other students and even being there for them to display a positive attitude when things got rough.
Let me say dental hygiene school IS stressful, and if you want to go home and cry everyday this IS normal! Oh how I would have loved to have someone to listen to my venting (we all know our families, spouses, boyfriends/girlfriends, friends DO NOT understand). To make my long story short (too late? :), this is why Dentalelle is here! I will listen to you vent and help you remain positive during this tough time. Seriously - email me when you feel like giving up or when you have been studying for 4 hours straight and think you can't do it anymore. I am here to help :).
I first started Dentalelle Tutoring because I wanted to help students, plain and simple. In my school - additional tutoring was $60 an hour and as a student working only weekends that is certainly something I couldn't afford. In fact, I didn't know any students who could unless mommy or daddy happened to be paying their full tuition and living expenses (gosh how that would have made things so much easier for me!).
For any student out there currently in dental hygiene school you know one hour of tutoring isn't enough, more like 4 hours AT LEAST are needed to really understand something. So basically you are paying $60x4=$240 for tutoring...umm no way! Needless to say in school I did not receive tutoring instruction if I needed it and neither of my friends did either. We kept saying "why isn't there anyone out there who can tutor us on weekends for a reasonable price and better yet online so we can sleep in for a change!"
This is how Dentalelle was born! I literally started designing the web site, developing course content and tutoring students a few months after I had graduated. This took TIME! Think of it this way, each 2 hour tutoring session or course took me at least 4 hours of prep (and still does, I am a perfectionist!) The program and material was still fresh in my mind and I really wanted to help make things easier and less stressful for students. We all know, if our marks are good (or GREAT) we are less stressed and can actually sleep at night right?!
So here we are - I tutor for individual class courses (pharmacology, oral pathology, radiography, etc.,), board exam preparation full courses (see the popular Board Exam Prep Academy here, which includes full tutoring and prep for the board exam until you graduate AND pass the exam), and continuing education courses for dental hygienists. We offer a discount for students who sign up together also. Email me if you have any questions anytime or you need to vent. I really am here to help and make your life as a dental hygiene student less stressful!
Also, did you know....?
I took dental hygiene school TWICE, yes TWICE! Imagine the stress of that?! A common saying I had for students when I went to school was "Hey, at least you are only taking this horrible, stressful program ONCE, remember now I took it twice!" :).
My name is Andrea Twarowski, owner and operator of Dentalelle Tutoring.