Why do you want to be dental hygiene?

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BM in Fremont, New Hampshire

70 months ago

BBH in Phoenix, Arizona said: The level of stress in my office is off the map! There are no jobs...as stated above. The hourly rate has lowered, due to oversaturation of the market.
I would never recommend this profession! I am looking to do something else. Overbooked, and the quality of the work I have seen from fellow hygienists drives me crazy. OK, feel better now. Sorry, bad week and want out!

Dear Bad Week, It is like we both say above. Schools want to keep their programs and there is no regulation in this field . I hope others thinking this is a great job to have think past the hourly wage "they think they are going to get" IT'S ($$$) GOING DOWN, ALOT OF POOR QUALIFIED R.D.H.'S DUE TO TIME FOR APPOINTMENTS DON'T CARE AND THUS THOSE OF US WHO DO, TRY TO GIVE THE PATIENT'S THE SCALING AND INFORMATION TO MAINTAIN A HEALTHY MOUTH.

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

70 months ago

BM in Fremont, New Hampshire said: Dental Hygiene is not a LOW STRESS LEVEL JOB. You must work for one of the very few Dentist's that is "Laid back".

Low Stress......I got a good laugh out of that. Dentist are some of the craziest people in the WORLD>
Thanks for the laugh
b

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BBH in Phoenix, Arizona

70 months ago

Many people are so clueless about what a Hygienist does. They think it is just a little polish, next!!! I will give you that some offices are tougher than others! But these days, along with reduced wages comes reduced time! And, nothing drives me crazier than seeing a patient that was seen 6 months ago with black sub calculus!Some hygienist's just do not care, or do not know what they are doing yet. School is one thing, but you really don't start really learning until you are on the job! So sick of Perio...and we are pushed to produce produce produce. Bottom line is it. I stand for quality, so we have had a few rounds on that one, as one hygienist is sooooo unethical. Since her arrival, I would like nothing better than to walk out that back door. BUT, no jobs!!!! 2 salary cuts in the last few months at my place.

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Breezy77 in Sheffield Lake, Ohio

70 months ago

Im really down in the dumps about hygiene right now. When I entered the program 6yrs ago I thought I would be on top of the world once I graduated. Well, that isnt the case. Ive been out of work for over an year. Moved from my home state of MI to OH hoping to find a job, but it hasnt happened so far. Im only hoping this this master's degree I have will open some other doors for me, cause waiting around to find a hygiene position in these times doesnt look too promising.
Real Talk! I wouldnt recommend this field to anyone right now. I hope things change soon. Im so motivated to start a RDH union. These schools and some DDS are getting away with highway robbery.
End Vent! Sorry...

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

70 months ago

Dear Breezy,
In the early morning hours reading your comment made me sad for you. I've been a Hygienist since 1981. Hygienist that found comfortable offices right out of school haven't a clue how hard it is out there in the World of the unemployed. I've been abused by Dentist, their wives and the staff for years in order to keep my income and the patients that I loved. I felt many times like I was selling my soul. There is NO job security in our business. Here at the end of my career I still hope for that comfortable office.

My suggestion to you is to keep your heart open. Things that appear to be negative can be the most powerful positive of your life. I remind myself often of the saying, "Sometimes we can be to close to the black board to see the writing on it".

becky

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imback in Bronx, New York

70 months ago

guys,most of u live in states where hyginest are under paid...NYC ,california,virginia where hyginist in demand..it is all about your state

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Breezy77 in Sheffield Lake, Ohio

70 months ago

rdhcu in Parker, Colorado said: Dear Breezy,
In the early morning hours reading your comment made me sad for you. I've been a Hygienist since 1981. Hygienist that found comfortable offices right out of school haven't a clue how hard it is out there in the World of the unemployed. I've been abused by Dentist, their wives and the staff for years in order to keep my income and the patients that I loved. I felt many times like I was selling my soul. There is NO job security in our business. Here at the end of my career I still hope for that comfortable office.

My suggestion to you is to keep your heart open. Things that appear to be negative can be the most powerful positive of your life. I remind myself often of the saying, "Sometimes we can be to close to the black board to see the writing on it".

becky

Thanks Becky for your concern. I cant help but wonder sometimes why I chose this career, although I do love what I do. I just hate the circumstances us rdh's are in right now.

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

70 months ago

Alot of the problems going on is our own fault. And I am blaming my generation of Hygienist and the next 20 years. We didn't stop it and we didn't stand by each other. As a group we have power.
Watch for Hygiene jobs through the new programs that Obama is giving money to. Also, V.A. Hospitals have to expand and there will be more opportunities there. It is also a safer place to be. You might watch the Government postings for Hygiene jobs all over the World. You are young and can really have some fun while doing what you like to do. It has been my experience that Hygienist working for the government make less money but get treated much better. And there is a retirement that they can't hold over your head. I came out of school pregnant with my first child. So I didn't have much flexiblity.

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Breezy77 in Sheffield Lake, Ohio

70 months ago

I agree rdhcu. They lack of conhesiveness in dental hygiene is a underlying problem that attributes to many of the problems we face. We under bid for positions out of desperation, and that in turn is driving the wages down for ALL of us. Alot of RDH's look the other way while DDS are allowing assistants to perform functions that only RDH's or the DDS is suppose to do. This alone keeps many RDH's from finding jobs. Also, the reluctance to report the "prophy mills" and insurance fraud (especially in many Medicaid accepting office), I mean the list goes on and on. On one hand I can understand why RDH's in these environments stay (they have families to feed, student loans to pay, etc..) but when is it gonna stop?
All the while the market for hygiene is getting worse. Soon, it will be too far gone to undo all the damage being done. I mean, I was fired after annoucing my pregnancy to my DDS. The kicker about that is, I couldnt persue any legal actions towards my employer for pregnancy discrimination because being a small private practice many of the laws didnt apply, due to the number of employees at the office (not to mention my AT-WILL employment status). Story like mine happen all the time. And guess what? All my collegues (other RDH's) could say was,"thats unfortunate, and hope you find another job". LOL, aint that a joke. In this market? Yeah, thats why Ive been unemployed over a year now. Sorry for the vent, but I had to get that off my chest!

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Suzanne in Terre Haute, Indiana

70 months ago

breezy77, I'm sorry for you. I too have had hard times in the 15 years I've practiced. I'm venting too on some other discussion sites. Many hygienists must have had all the luck I was supposed to or something. I left a practice 3 years ago that I had been at for 7, built the hyg. dept. from 1 day a week to 4. I had 30 to 40 min for adults and my schedule was slammed everyday. Dr. had a front desk girl, who was my friend, who showed up late daily or not at all, talked on the phone with her boyfriend and family CONSTANTLY to the point we were not having patients call. She threw recall cards in the trash because she had a date, stole whitening gel, toothbrushes for friends and family, and never pulled charts or even printed a schedule. The asst & I started protesting, in a nice way of course, and we both got canned. I found out later that after he had cut my pay from 50% to 29% with no notice, that he was giving her a $2/hr raise, paying her for all the days she didn't show up, and paying her credit card bills. I was devastated over it. My last job was to develop a hyg dept in an urgent care clinic. I worked 7 weeks, ordered inst, set up an op, filled the sched, did countless srp, then was terminated 1 week before xmas due to the economy they said. A month later, an asst from the clinic called to tell me they hired a new grad for less than half they were paying me. We get used and abused and tossed to the side. You are right, we need somewhere to go with our issues. God Bless

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

70 months ago

I worked in a office with 2 dentist and 6 hygienist. One dentist was doing so much coke that he would get migranes that would cause him to loose the center of his vision. Over and over I tried to discuss his problem. Everyone wanted to put their heads in the sand. If you can't see in the center of your vision you can't see decay in xrays and the margins of your crowns are really bad. As a group of Hygienist we had power. Because I spoke up and repeatedly showed the other dentist things that wasn't right I was fired. I also was told, "Dr. So and So may never admit it but YOU made him a better Dentist". This was said to me by the other Dentist.
Not one Hygienist spoke up. Over the years I have watched each of them pay the price. One had 55 ---10 hours a day---well days taken away from her. They just didn't want to give that benefit anymore. And legally they got away with it. There was nothing she could do. Another one just recently was told they were giving one of her days to one of the new young hygienist. This hygienist has been there for 30 years. They didn't ask her if they could do that, they told her they were going to do that.
I was just hired to work 2 days a week. I am lucky when I get one. If a few patients cancel the day before then I am out of work.
Hygienist need to speak up. It helps to know we are not alone.
I fully understand.....Vent.....with the word Professional shoved down our throats in School you would think things would be different.
Enjoy being a Mother, it is over all to soon. That was my best job.

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Suzanne in Terre Haute, Indiana

70 months ago

I agree! I am a grandmother now and it's wonderful too. My kids have been the best part of my life. Once when my son was 10 and in the hospital I asked to leave an hour early without pay for a test he was having done and the dr. told me I needed to get my priorities straight. I told him they WERE my priorities. Heck, they were the reason I got out of bed every morning! He was flabbergasted and I laughed and left. He never mentioned it again but then his wife fired me a week later because I went to the hospital instead of her Christmas party and she didn't even work in the office!!
I always loved being a hygienist and looking back I know I made many dr's a load of money. I also know I did a great service for my patients and always gave 100% if not more. I'm sure you did too. Wouldn't it be great if we could have a march or something and let the public know how their precious dr treats us behind the scenes?

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

70 months ago

When I tell people what I've experienced as a Hygienist they can't believe it.
I always thought it was funny how the word Team was used in the Dental office. There isn't a Team there is just the KING/Queen. And sometimes its the Wife.
I also think Dentist can be very jealous of the relationship the hygienist has with the patients. It's nice to be told you are the best Hygienist they have ever had. But it makes you sick to know it doesn't matter. One patient can say anything and you are out.
We probably should have been Unionized years ago.
If I where to speak out I would be blackballed to never work again in the Denver area. The Dental Hygiene Association is the one who should be protecting us.

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Breezy77 in Sheffield Lake, Ohio

70 months ago

rdhcu in Parker, Colorado said: When I tell people what I've experienced as a Hygienist they can't believe it.
I always thought it was funny how the word Team was used in the Dental office. There isn't a Team there is just the KING/Queen. And sometimes its the Wife.
I also think Dentist can be very jealous of the relationship the hygienist has with the patients. It's nice to be told you are the best Hygienist they have ever had. But it makes you sick to know it doesn't matter. One patient can say anything and you are out.
We probably should have been Unionized years ago.
If I where to speak out I would be blackballed to never work again in the Denver area. The Dental Hygiene Association is the one who should be protecting us.

RDHCU You make a great point. Why isnt the Hygiene Association doing more to help us? They have to be WELL aware of these complaints. It doesnt matter what city or state your in, these DDS are pulling the same shananigins. I would love to get hygiene unionized across the board. Maybe more rdh"s will get a backbone to SPEAK-UP!

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angel in Stockbridge, Georgia

67 months ago

Dental hygiene associations cant protect us if we as hygienist dont join. I know this is a huge problem in Georgia.

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BrezzyRDH in Westlake, Ohio

67 months ago

I agree somewhat Angel, but many cant afford it with decreased working hrs, or months of unemployment.

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Suzanne in Terre Haute, Indiana

67 months ago

Brezzy and Angel, I agree with both of you. I would gladly join our ADHA but cannot afford to. I have been laid off for 7 months and now I am not spending any money that isn't a necessity. I was a member for about 10 years but really always felt it was a waste of money. I don't know what the benefit was of belonging.
I too would rather being paying union dues. Our profession is a life long commitment for many of us and we need representation. A place to go when dr's ask for unethical practices, no benefits, wives running the office with no knowledge of dentistry just their own personal gain, dr's closing on a whim with no regard for staff salary ect. The list goes on and on.

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exp in Massachusetts

67 months ago

Suzanne in Terre Haute, Indiana said: Brezzy and Angel, I agree with both of you. I would gladly join our ADHA but cannot afford to. I have been laid off for 7 months and now I am not spending any money that isn't a necessity. I was a member for about 10 years but really always felt it was a waste of money. I don't know what the benefit was of belonging.
I too would rather being paying union dues. Our profession is a life long commitment for many of us and we need representation. A place to go when dr's ask for unethical practices, no benefits, wives running the office with no knowledge of dentistry just their own personal gain, dr's closing on a whim with no regard for staff salary ect. The list goes on and on.

Hi Suzanne, I agree! If they would help the overcrowding too, by limiting the number of students for each hygiene program , maybe ( a BIG if)those of us older, new and students just graduating would find more employment....Bottom line is $ with Dr.'s and the ADHA justs watches...If this org. decided to put in place laws (on the books), I feel more of us would join and continue to be active members.

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BreezyRDH in Westlake, Ohio

67 months ago

exp you bring up more great points about areas the ADHA can help improve the profession. Without addressing these issues the ADHA can look forward to more RDH's skipping out on membership. It will continue to seem like yet another rip-off with a glorified name..

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frombigapple in Brooklyn, New York

64 months ago

as i read all these comments i became more and more depressed. i am currently taking my final prereqs and will be applying to the dental hygiene program. someone had mentioned that there should be less students in each program. well i thought that there are very few students. i find that in general the program is very competative to get into and its in a very few colleges. even in metro ny there are about maybe only 3 schools that have dh. but now i am simply scared of all of what i just read. i know that it is only a 2 year degree but its a difficult one and once done, u r a "professional." but what the heck does that mean? according to some of these hygienist its basically a slave job where u are unappreciated and have zero job security. omg, wow! so should i not go for this degree? seriously, this scares me. i can only hope that not all hygienist have such terrible experiences in this field. is there anyone here at all that has positive experiences. i totally understand the girls that are venting here but is it all that bad? i just want a good paying job that allows me to be a mom and leave my work behind when i am done for the day. are there any new yorkers here? is the situation in ny as bad as around the country? many people posting here are from other places. once i am done with my prereqs, if i am not going to be accepted in to dh program, i will have to choose something else. but if i do get in, r u hygienist saying its not worth it? many people say that nursing is a better way to go now. but what if thats just not my thing. i cannot see myself doing that. i just dont know anymore. i really hope that i get some responses because someone has to shed some light on this for me. this is my future and i need to deside soon. thanks for reading.

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

64 months ago

My heart goes out to you. I started out with dental Hygiene being the only thing I wanted to be in life. The babies weren't happening and I was looking for something to love. Here I am 30 years later willing to be what ever a dentist wants me to be in order to not loose my house. The job situation is bad here. If you are lucky to get with a good dentist then you are lucky. It could happen. I have friends that have had a easy time of it ALL these years. If my patients along the way knew how I was treated they would never have stayed with the Dr.s that abused me. I would watch the job situation in your area. See how many jobs come up in the next 2 mos. Go to one of the Dental Hygiene Association meetings and talk to people. Call the school. It's one thing to work a nasty job and its another to not have a nasty job to go to. Good luck. Hope it turns around soon for our country. We have a lot of master degreed young people unemployed here in Colorado. sad, very sad.

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frombigapple in Brooklyn, New York

64 months ago

rdhcu in Parker, Colorado said: My heart goes out to you. I started out with dental Hygiene being the only thing I wanted to be in life. The babies weren't happening and I was looking for something to love. Here I am 30 years later willing to be what ever a dentist wants me to be in order to not loose my house. The job situation is bad here. If you are lucky to get with a good dentist then you are lucky. It could happen. I have friends that have had a easy time of it ALL these years. If my patients along the way knew how I was treated they would never have stayed with the Dr.s that abused me. I would watch the job situation in your area. See how many jobs come up in the next 2 mos. Go to one of the Dental Hygiene Association meetings and talk to people. Call the school. It's one thing to work a nasty job and its another to not have a nasty job to go to. Good luck. Hope it turns around soon for our country. We have a lot of master degreed young people unemployed here in Colorado. sad, very sad.

i will def do what u suggested. u r absolutely right. but if u dont mind me asking what is it in your particular situation that u define as abuse from your dds? please elaborate! i would like to understand fully the magnitude of the potential crap i may have to endure in the future.
you know, one of my closest friends is a dds. he is a perfectionist and a recent grad. he loves to do his job well and is very much into cosmetic dentistry. he is working as an employee for now. the dds that he works with doesnt like him because he workes slow and cares about quality not quantity and is much better then the seasoned doctor. my secret dream is to work with him in his own practice of course. but thats just my thoughts. it doesnt mean it will happen and i cant be going into dh thinking that once i graduate everything will be peachy. i have to prepare for anything and everything. plus now its not just mine, but my families future i have to think about.

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

64 months ago

Well, you hit on one situation that can be difficult and that is lowering your standards in order to fit. Hygienist are forced to sell dentistry. If you don't produce the numbers you are fired. You can be force to use substandard equipment. Which ends up being hard on your body. I have worked where you did not get a lunch or break. And if a patient doesn't show up you better not sit down. You are the highest paid employee and it drives Dentist crazy if you are not making them money. More now then ever I am seeing Dentist tell patients they need a crown when a filling would give the patient many years of a good option. It's all about money. I have also seen lazy old dentist just keep telling their patients "Lets watch it or everything is fine" when it is not. They use the words professional and team. There is only one person who is king and that is the owner. As your friend knows even dentist working for dentiat are treated bad. Hygienist will do Hygienist in also. I have friends that have worked in a office for over 30 years and they make less money then the new dateable Hygienist. Your benifits can be taken away as the years go by too. There is nothing you can do. SO I would say. Don't put yourself in a position that you NEED your money. Pay for things as you have the money saved. Plan your own retirement plans, vacation savings and christmas bonus. That is how it use to be. IF you get something from them count your blessings. Just don't depend on it. I absolutely love to do the work I do. I love to see how I can improve a persons life in a hour. Some people even appreciate it. That is your payment. NOT the money. Nurses are having a hard time too. There just seems to be more options for them. If I had it to do over I would have gotten a government Hygiene job and made less money, but would have had a retirement now.

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atRDH in Gresham, Oregon

61 months ago

wanna be DH in GA in Lilburn, Georgia said: I still don't know why I want to be a dental hygiene. Yes. flexible hour. I worked in the dentist for 2 yrs, and I love it. Pay is gOod. But that's not a best reason to say in my interview to get into the program. Can anyone help me to think what can be the best reason? I really want to be DH, but I don't know why. I just REALLY REALLy want to be one! =) And also What would be the pros and cons to become a DH?

Well, to be quite honest, I honestly think that you should want and love to do hygiene. I just graduated from hygiene school and it is no walk in the park. The schooling is rigorous and the only way myself and my classmates got through it is because we had a desire to do hygiene. I'm not going to lie; the fact that you get compensated well for what you do and that the schedules are flexible is amazing, but money and schedules aren't going to be the only things to get you through the next 10, 20, 30 years of work.
As for the interview, at least with my instructors, they could pick out the ones that wanted to explore the profession from interest from the ones that wanted the slot for the money.
I'm not trying to be harsh. I just think that you should think about why you really want to do dental hygiene.

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dear Georgia in Parker, Colorado

61 months ago

I had worked as a Dental Assist before applying to Hygiene School. My answer to your question was that I loved Dentistry but I wanted more personal control over my own quality of work.
That aside.........after 30 years of Hygiene what keeps me in it???? I change lives. A example was a woman in her 30's that had a white spider web looking spot under tongue. I was so pleased that the Dr. I am working for listened to me and took it seriously.
It was cancer and we caught it in time that they were able to remove all of it with only a small scar.
Forget the money, the hours or any security. I am afraid that is of the past. There are very few jobs and you can work your life away building up someone else's business. You will hear Team work over and over. It does not exists. You have to find something else to bring you joy from this business. I hope you find yours.
Good Luck

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exp in Epping, New Hampshire

61 months ago

dear Georgia in Parker, Colorado said: I had worked as a Dental Assist before applying to Hygiene School. My answer to your question was that I loved Dentistry but I wanted more personal control over my own quality of work.
That aside.........after 30 years of Hygiene what keeps me in it???? I change lives. A example was a woman in her 30's that had a white spider web looking spot under tongue. I was so pleased that the Dr. I am working for listened to me and took it seriously.
It was cancer and we caught it in time that they were able to remove all of it with only a small scar.
Forget the money, the hours or any security. I am afraid that is of the past. There are very few jobs and you can work your life away building up someone else's business. You will hear Team work over and over. It does not exists. You have to find something else to bring you joy from this business. I hope you find yours.
Good Luck

Hi, BEWARE of JackiePA, she feels the market is there and says if you really want to pursue this as a career that there is work and good offices,etc. She feels that opinions and advice from those unable to find work (not because of recession, but oversaturation of the field) is not true....I hope she sees that an R.D.H. from CO with experience is speaking from experience and the reality for many professionals. 23yr vet

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Susan in Placentia, California

60 months ago

BM in Fremont, New Hampshire said: Dental Hygiene is not a LOW STRESS LEVEL JOB. You must work for one of the very few Dentist's that is "Laid back".

I work for two dentists who are very "laid back." One would not allow me to sell products in her office and one thought I was a little aggressive in recommending SRPs to patients.

There *are* laid back dentists out there1

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exp in Epping, New Hampshire

60 months ago

Susan in Placentia, California said: I work for two dentists who are very "laid back." One would not allow me to sell products in her office and one thought I was a little aggressive in recommending SRPs to patients.

There *are* laid back dentists out there1

That's great, but I think they are the minority in today's market. I have experienced both types, and prefer not having to sell, sell, sell! , and , they didn't give me any extra from selling products; they have the upper hand now, push products, procedures, and some unnecassry(sp) fillings to fund their vaca's and children's ed's. Not all Dr.'s are like this, yes, but in todays situation....it seems to be happening more. Fortunately, right now I have the pleasure of working 2, 1/2 days for 2 Dr.'s who are also laid back....wish they needed me for 3-4 full days combined.*

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

58 months ago

Karma is right. There is a lot of that going on in Dentistry. I've lived long enough to see some of the Karma come back on them. Dentist enjoy the control they have over employees lives. I've seen them take their employees down when they are unhappy. I am working for a Dentist that sends the profits of the business to a another Country. It isn't shared with the employee's in a form of a raise or a bonus. I was looking at some schedules that I had taken home from another job that I did a few years ago and it all came back to me how hard I worked in a previous office. 8-9 hours with no lunch and no breaks. If a patient didn't come in and you took any longer then 20 mins. to eat your lunch were yelled at. It's against the law "Yes" but the law isn't going to help you keep your job if you speak up. There is NO security in our jobs.
I say......"UNIONIZE our profession"

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exp in Exeter, New Hampshire

58 months ago

Ronda Lifford in Kingsport, Tennessee said: Well, let me tell you what happened to me. I worked for the same dentist for almost 29 years. Last year in March, he had just paid for me to take the course to learn to anesthetize patients. Passed with flying colors. Sercure. NOT. The week I passed, his sister in law got fired from her job, and the next day she had mine. I loved my profession. Now I am 53, and cant find another job, because of the economy, and I think they all want younger and prettier hygienist that they can pay less. My letter of rec. stated, if you hire her, I promise you she will be the best hygienist you will ever have. Huray. I am now facing foreclosure on my house, my credit is damaged. He could care less. My best advice would be to not work where there are family affairs.

Hi Ronda, Sorry to hear all the ....that this Dr. put you through...I don't know in TN, but, maybe you could google/pose ?'s to find some free legal advice as to what you can do about wrongful termination because of a "family" mem. needing a job (yours)! It may give you some piece of mind...? Worth looking into for info...Even if he wrote you a "nice letter", it seems something can be done on your behalf...GL

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exp in Exeter, New Hampshire

58 months ago

Ronda...As Suzanne said above...be careful, as we speak, so can they and make it miserable for you in finding future work....

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waterbug100 in Nanaimo, British Columbia

58 months ago

Hi...I've been reading your posts and it makes me really sad. All of you have given so much to your jobs - long years, heart and soul. I would be honored to place myself amongst you.

I just want to say that part of our problem is that we have been taught and have bought the idea that hygiene is a CAREER. It isn't. What other area has the ability to become a professional after a diploma? None that I know of. I think if we were told right from the start that hygiene is a JOB, without security, bonuses, benefits, legal rights, pensions,sometimes respect...maybe we wouldn't have had the expecttations we had. We were convinced otherwise, and have consequently been betrayed and stepped on throughout our 'career'. I wish that the schools would stop and be REAL. It is a job, and only a job.

We will never be able to unionize. The other professions that are unionized work in large institutions (thinking about RNs - which in Canada are not considered professionals until you take the degree program now). There would be no way to legally regulate every little tom dick harry DDS. It won't ever happen.

In Canada, we HAVE to pay into both our federal and provincial hygiene associations..but they do sweet F.A. for us. They have allowed non accreditted schools to open across Canada, flooding the market with non accreditted 'hygienists', who do substandard work for much lower wages. Some of these schools are owned and operated by DDS. Our associations have done NOTHING! This year, I paid them $700.00...for what?

I think a lot of the DDS are clapping their hands with joy at the hygiene situation through out Canada and the US. The market is absolutely flooded and only god knows what hygiene is going to look like in the next 5 years or so. Very different than in the past that's for sure. May we live in interesting times!!

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

58 months ago

Dear Waterbug, Thanks for the words. And yes it is very sad.
In Colorado the Dental Schools are flooding the market with not only U.S. Dentist but Foreign Dentist. They have closed the B.S. degree Hygiene Program and used the space for Foreign Dentist. The school can make more money off that kind of student. Also the Corporate Dental Businesses higher many of these Foreign Dentist once they are out of school. These Dentist are not treated with any more respect then what we have seen for years as Hygienist. All of this is going to come back and bite them on their own rears.
It is all very sad

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waterbug100 in Nanaimo, British Columbia

58 months ago

Hi rdhcu...I don't have anymore words...I agree, it is just too sad. I know that eventually people will catch on to the fact that there are no jobs, and they are in debt for nothing...but what a waste of time and energy. Only then will those schools start closing, because of lack of enrollment. But, the damage will take a very long time, if ever, to recover...if it ever will. I think the respect for the profession of hygiene will have changed irrevocabley. The DDS that have been instrumental in opening of these schools will end up with what they deserve...a very watered down version of what hygiene used to be. But maybe that is what they wanted. Who knows.

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Pea Owed in Denver, Colorado

57 months ago

It's an astrocity to require Dental Hygienists to carry their own malpractice insurance, when the Dentists are telling us what to do, and we can "get fired" in Colorado (legally) without any reason. I am sick that a patient's insurance often determines how much time is scheduled for their hygiene appointments, yet now a hygienist can be sued and a dentist may point the finger anywhere but themselves. If you don't abide by the schedule, you may lose your job. If you spend too much time explaining why out-of pocket expense may be required to treat and establish health..you may get replaced by someone that is willing to half-ass a "cleaning" just so production keeps going. I have been told, "it's okay leave some tarter-get it at heir next visit." What?!!.. Isn't that the road to, "Whay do I need Root Planning Therapy? I've been here every 6mos., and had thorough "cleanings""..opens the door to a patient leaving the office.. then the DR. says, "Good. Glad they left, their insurance doesn't pay." Let's hope those patients don't know any attorneys! If they do want to sue..guess who the finger may be directed at...

Thank God the State allows the Dental Hygienist to set up her own practice, but nobody can afford to start it up, and banks are not giving loans. There are many wonderful practices out there and great dentists that are ethical and treat their staff well, but those jobs are not available.

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rdhcu in Parker, Colorado

57 months ago

How I know your words well. I see there is another posting for the famous Perfect Teeth. It saddens me to know what is going on to Hygienist. I too have been told to just polish the patients teeth, leave the tartar.
I would never suggest my own daughters to go into Dental Hygiene. It is a different World out there and there seems to be nothing we can do.
I thought about starting a support group for traumatized Hygienist.
Patients are the ones that need to get seriously pissed off. Most know the difference between a good cleaning and a bad one. I wonder why they settle for what I have seen out there.
The Good Dentists that find themselves in the Corporate World get treated as bad as the Hygienist. You either do what they say and make the money or you are out of there.
It's a very sad time in Dentistry.

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Suzanne in Terre Haute, Indiana

57 months ago

I agree. I work for a corp and the dr is such a nice guy and so good to the patients but he gets absolutely no respect. Every suggestion he makes or everything he tries to implement is disregarded. He made the comment this week that he is treated as if he is leading a team of misfits and that he's the #1 reject. I don't know where it will end but things are not as they should be. I like the idea of a support group for traumatized hygienists! Had to smile though. I can really visualize an underpaid and overworked hyg wondering what the heck happened? LOL

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Plucky in Vernon, British Columbia

57 months ago

Pea Owed in Denver, Colorado said: It's an astrocity to require Dental Hygienists to carry their own malpractice insurance, when the Dentists are telling us what to do, and we can "get fired" in Colorado (legally) without any reason. I am sick that a patient's insurance often determines how much time is scheduled for their hygiene appointments, yet now a hygienist can be sued and a dentist may point the finger anywhere but themselves. If you don't abide by the schedule, you may lose your job. If you spend too much time explaining why out-of pocket expense may be required to treat and establish health..you may get replaced by someone that is willing to half-ass a "cleaning" just so production keeps going. I have been told, "it's okay leave some tarter-get it at heir next visit." What?!!.. Isn't that the road to, "Whay do I need Root Planning Therapy? I've been here every 6mos., and had thorough "cleanings""..opens the door to a patient leaving the office.. then the DR. says, "Good. Glad they left, their insurance doesn't pay." Let's hope those patients don't know any attorneys! If they do want to sue..guess who the finger may be directed at...

Thank God the State allows the Dental Hygienist to set up her own practice, but nobody can afford to start it up, and banks are not giving loans. There are many wonderful practices out there and great dentists that are ethical and treat their staff well, but those jobs are not available.

I wonder it it's ok to "leave some tartar-get it at the next visit" when it's time to clean to boss's teeth?

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Suzanne in Terre Haute, Indiana

57 months ago

Good point!
I had one dr that told me not to scale all the teeth, that if you can't see the calculus it's too small to worry about! Of course I told him I knew he was too ethical to be serious (yeah right) and then he laughed and said he was only kidding but to do as much as I could in 15 min and get on to the next one. I didn't work there very long. It always ticks me off that hygienists are expected to do an hours worth (or more) of work in 30 minutes or less. How is that possible? I use my ultrasonic constantly because I'm always cut short on time and I won't leave anything behind. Just yesterday my OM who doesn't have one ounce of clinical knowledge was standing behind me tapping her watch asking "is that really necessary" when I was using my air to check the linguals of lower anteriors! YES, it is. I said in front of the pt that I still had 20 min and she'd only been in the chair 10 so could you please go away? I just went on with it but this happens so often it's nuts. I wish pt's would get angry and voice their questions and opinions. We need their support. I've even told pt's we have comment cards but they act intimidated too.

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waterbug100 in Nanaimo, British Columbia

57 months ago

Plucky...how are things in the Interior?

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Plucky in Vernon, British Columbia

57 months ago

Not any better. I've only seen 3 jobs advertised locally in the last 6 months or so. My office doesn't need anyone/isn't advertising but is getting alot of resumes too. 3 jobs is not bad when considering how often any type of career position comes available in any line of professional work. But, the GOOD office positions are few and far between. Places with good office dynamics that treat you and patients with respect have loyal staff. You usually have to wait for a mat leave to get into them. 'fortunately, hygienists are mostly women ;). The absolute worst offices, who could never get anyone, are now stocked. Suzanne's comment about being asked to leave the tartar behind makes me think that experienced hygienists are NOT an asset to those offices. If they want the "quick and dirty" then they probably want some newbie who doesn't know any better anyway. Who'll just be a good subordinate and do what they're told. Alot of the vets are older too or have the extra weight around the middle from the constant cortisol stress surge. And, alot of the newbies are young, firm, and easy on the eyes....I'm sure that's a factor too. That said, I would never want to work in an office like that anyway and I believe in being true to myself. I truly believe that the vast majority of dentists are decent people who want a good and competent staff and environment, if you look hard and apply yourself, and have ALOT of flexibility (can move, etc.) you can find the right fit. I'm sure there are rural places out there that have never had a hygienist before who would love to try one on. The work will be hard but you have to ask....what did I get into this for? Hygiene is hard and for those who thought they were going to get an easy ride well, they'll soon find out it isn't! Times have changed again. It's like back in the 80's when you had to really go out an wow them to get a job. A hygienist willing to apply themselves, I'm sure, could create a position for themselves somewhere.

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waterbug100 in Nanaimo, British Columbia

57 months ago

Yes, it's pretty saturated here as well. Not many RDH have full time positions anymore..jobs have been cut because of lack of patients, not production. Plus, cost cuts by the DDS..new grads are willing to work for less..for almost anything. And there are too many DDS on the island..they are hurting as well.

I agree, it's not an asset to be experienced these days. There are many new grads that are more than willing to do things an experienced RDH would refuse to do. And the 'eye candy' is certainly an aspect against an older experienced RDH.

Adds are few and for a day or two..no full time at all advertised. I don't know how the new grads are doing it..paying back huge student loans, and working a day a week.

Yes, there is a lot going against an experienced RDH..and it's a tough time for DH in general. Too many, and too few jobs. But necessity is the mother of invention..and who knows what creative thinking will come of this?

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30 year vet in Edmonton, Alberta

57 months ago

Hey Waterbug....ya...it really is sad---too many RDHs, and too few jobs....and it is NOT just about the economy. I had a new grad tell me today that her parents are upset with her because she is only working part time and they want her to start paying more on the student loans, but she can't get any more than a few hours a week of work. She told me today she'd even go for ANY dollar figure as long as she got a job. She also told me she felt absolutely LIED TO by the DH schools about the status of the profession and would NEVER have gone into it had she known it was SO TOUGH to get work out there. I feel so bad for her---because she is bright, articulate, and well educated. I told her to check out Dentistry or even Pharmacy with all her years of science and dental hygiene.

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rdhcu in Littleton, Colorado

57 months ago

Can't you just see her parents face when she tells them she wants to go back to school??? LOL But that is exactly what I would do. Cross over into as many directions as she can. Nursing would be another profession I wish I would have as a option.
Also, the military is a nice place for Hygienist if you can get your foot in the door.

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waterbug100 in Nanaimo, British Columbia

57 months ago

30 year vet...YES..I think that's another avenue to bug..the LIES the schools are telling students. I checked the one private school we have here, and they are still insisting that RDH make 40 to 50/hour and have an enormous variety of working situations. They state the wage twice in their brochure.

It's no wonder the prospective student don't believe what they read here. We DO sound like a bunch of doomsayers..and I think two people have mentioned that we want all the work to ourselves...! Ya!

Honestly, it's a much larger scale mess than first perceived. It is coming at us from so many different aspects...

..the economy - DDS losing patients and having to close a day or so = less RDH time, less job opportunities.

...plus schools saturating the market = too many RDH for far too few jobs.

...plus new grads working for ANY dollar figure = lowering of the standard of practice and wages..

Good advice for the person you know. If they can afford it, go back to school, into something that is stable and well established.

Really curious to see DH future.

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30 year vet in Edmonton, Alberta

57 months ago

rdhcu in Littleton, Colorado said: Can't you just see her parents face when she tells them she wants to go back to school??? LOL But that is exactly what I would do. Cross over into as many directions as she can. Nursing would be another profession I wish I would have as a option.
Also, the military is a nice place for Hygienist if you can get your foot in the door.

Yes.....i really wonder about the opportunities into the Military in Canada for some of these grads....? hummm.....I still think Nursing would give you more options than Dental Hygiene.

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hrs in Kamloops, British Columbia

57 months ago

BC license is asset???????

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waterbug100 in Nanaimo, British Columbia

57 months ago

hrs in Kamloops...sad, hey?

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dr trivikram in Hyderabad, India

56 months ago

hi i am planning to do diploma in dental hygine in canada can some one tell me is it worth full to do it what would be the pay after completion, also suggest me some other courses related to dentistry where i could get good pay , i am a dentist in india the condition for the dentist is worst i am planning to settel in abroad by doing some courses so please help me

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rdhcu in Canby, Oregon

56 months ago

Dear India Friend,
I would suggest you continue in the Dentist Direction. ALL job situations are bad, but the Dentist have a lot more options. The USA dental schools will be happy to take your money. They are expanding their Foreign student class size. Corporations will hire you and be happy to abuse you. But then again it might be better then what you are use to. :) Good Luck

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