Helping people protect their smiles and health are two main goals of a dental hygienist.
At Lone Star College-Kingwood, students in the Dental Hygiene program are educated to become dental hygienists through the classroom and clinical work. Due to Hurricane Harvey, the program is still housed at the Lone Star College-Kingwood Dental Hygiene Annex located at 23750 FM 1314 in Porter. It will return to the main campus once the new Health Professions Center opens in 2021.
“Students in the program are prepared to go into a dental office and work as a dental hygienist,” said Joanna Allaire, dental hygiene program director. “They will learn about the relationship that the mouth has to the rest of the body; how to teach patients to take care of their mouths; and how to place preventive sealants and clean teeth.”
Anyone interested in learning more about this program is invited to attend Dental Hygiene information sessions this fall on the main campus. The meetings are Sept. 19, Oct. 17, and Nov. 21 at 5 p.m. in the Music Instructional Building (MUS) Room 117. The purpose is to provide information on the program and admissions requirements and it will give potential students a chance to ask questions.
Dental hygiene students receive instruction on a variety of skills such as hand and ultrasonic instrumentation, fluorides and non-surgical periodontal therapy. They also receive oral hygiene instructional education and learn traditional and digital radiography, current uses of dental materials, and dental software technology within the dental setting.
Through a partnership with Texas Woman’s University, students can earn their Associate of Applied Science degree in dental hygiene and a Bachelor of Science degree in dental hygiene without leaving LSC-Kingwood.
Once students complete their courses, they are prepared to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Exam and the clinical board exam, which are required for licensure. Graduating from the program and completing these exams with a passing grade are required to be eligible for licensure to become a registered dental hygienist. Since the program began in 2004, every graduate has passed all required board exams.