21+ California Dental Hygienist Schools To Get Into 2022-2023

how to become dental hygienist in california
how to become dental hygienist in california

California Dental Hygienist Schools: Whether you’re in Los Angeles or any Californian city, these accredited schools will train you on all you need to know about dental hygiene and how to become one in CA. 

Dental hygiene is one of the most unconsidered courses in the university and yet one of the lifesavers.

Imagine having to deal with a friend who has bad breath. That’s torture especially if he or she hasn’t considered treatment or thinks they do not have bad breath. 

All of these can be solved if they take advantage of the training of dental hygienists. 

Knowing how important dental health and hygiene are, we have put together this piece to help students who want to solve the problem of oral health get to the best dental hygienist schools in California.

In California, there are accredited dental hygiene schools designed to train you on how to become a dental hygienist.

This guide instructs you on the best college to enroll in and what makes them exceptional for dental hygiene.

Also, we have streamlined the options for students who want to study in dental hygienist schools in Los Angeles, CA.

A dental hygienist in CA must be licensed and have work experience as a hygienist for a minimum of 2,000 hours in the preceding 36 months to work in California.

These and many more facts about becoming a dental hygienist you will find as you read this piece diligently.

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ALSO READ: 21+ Easiest Dental Schools to Get Into In United States 2022

Table of Content

Being a Dental Hygienist in California

About 4,800 hygienists that work in California work in the Los Angeles area.

This is so because Los Angeles has a lot of aging population who need the care to maintain their natural teeth. 

This leads to more demand for dental hygienists in the area. And in turn, dental hygiene schools in California receive more applications.

Although there are enough hospitals and facilities that need the services of a dental hygienist, most Dental hygienists in California work as independent practitioners. 

However, before you’re allowed to practice as an independent practitioner, you must be licensed and have work experience of about 2,000 hours.

This is a great job for one who naturally has flair for mouth care. 

You can be sure that California has a slot for you. But first, you need to be trained by the best Dental Hygienist Schools in the Los Angeles area or any other city in California.

What is the Job Outlook Of Dental Hygienists in California?

Dental hygiene is a thriving profession in California. 

Every year the demand for more dental hygienists increases. 

Currently, the need for more dental hygienists in the Golden State is expected to grow by over 15% in 2028.

This estimate is higher than other states’ growth in other USA states 

What this invariably says is that the California market is open to entry-level hygienists. 

Every year, the dental hygiene job openings are about 1,370.

What are the Factors To Consider While Selecting a Dental Hygiene School in California?

Making a choice from the pool of dental hygienist schools in California can be a task especially when there are a lot of great schools for dental hygiene in CA.

To help you make a wise choice, we have put together some of the factors that will help you make a good choice.

Keep in mind that these factors may be different based on the person. Choices differ by person.

What these factors are there to do is to put your needs into consideration and help you find a school that meets your educational needs.

Here are the factors to consider when selecting a school from the list of the best accredited dental hygiene schools in California;

#1. How Long Is This Dental School?

Keep in mind that not all dental schools offer the same course curriculum for the same duration.

Some schools offer their dental hygiene programs for 4 years while some have accelerated programs that last for just two years.

#2. What Kind Of Dental Hygiene Programs Are Offered in The School?

While considering the list of accredited dental hygiene schools in California you will find below, ensure you find out the type of programs they offer.

Obviously, you’ll want to choose a dental hygiene school in California that will train you well on what you want to know.

However keep in mind that all dental hygienist schools in California offer programs that cover basic science courses such as anatomy, physiology, biology, and pharmacology. 

Others offer special courses like dental materials, dental pharmacology, and pain relief. 

On the other hand, some dental hygienist programs in California schools focus on dental skills such as removing plaque and tartar from teeth.

Few offer lab skills in anesthesia and X-ray procedures.

Whichever way, you need to ensure the school you pick from the pool of dental hygiene schools in Los Angeles, CA will train you on how to become a hygienist in California.

#3. What is the cost of the Dental Hygiene School?

Keep in mind that the program and school you choose will determine the cost you will pay for tuition and other fees as a student.

So while making your pick, consider the tuition cost of each school and program. 

Your budget will help you make the right choice or you can make a choice from the List Of Available Scholarships In California to foot your academic expenses.

Ensure you do your research beforehand. It will help you find not just a dental hygiene program that suits you but also. a school that will train you on how to become a dental hygienist in California.

ALSO READ: 25+ Best Dentistry Schools In The World | 2022 rankings

What Kind of Hygiene Programs Are Offered in California Dental Hygienist Schools?

If you want to become a dental hygienist in California you need to have a degree in dental hygiene or any related course in any of the Californian schools.

Majorly, you can become a dental hygienist in California by studying any of these:

  • An associate degree at a community college.
  • An associate degree from a technical college.
  • Finishing your undergraduate degree from four-year colleges and universities.
  • A master’s degree for those interested in research and tutoring.

In other words, dental hygienist schools in CA offer dental hygiene programs at Associate Degree, Bachelor’s Degree, and Master’s Degree levels. 

What is the Duration of Dental Hygiene Programs in Schools in California?

Depending on the dental hygiene program you’re doing in any of the dental hygienist schools in Los Angeles, CA, the duration of the program will differ. 

An associate degree in dental hygiene in California will take 20 to 30 months to complete.

A bachelor’s degree in any of the four-year colleges or universities will take 4 years to complete while a master’s degree program will take 2 years to complete.

Whichever program track will train you on how to become a  certified dental hygienist in California.

What is the Cost of Dental Hygienist Schools in California?

Different dental programs have different tuition costs. 

And the tuition cost of the program will also differ based on the college that is offering it.

An associate degree in a community or technical college will cost between $5,310 – $58,970.

A bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene at California dental hygienist schools will cost about $24,600 for a state-funded school and $107,850 for a Private school. 

However, a master’s degree program in dental hygiene in California will cost you about $32,060 and $99,020.

Best California Dental Hygienist Schools To Get Into.

From our research, here is a list of accredited California dental hygienist schools to study dental hygiene and become a practicing professional in Los Angeles or any other California city;

  • Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry University of Southern California.
  • Arthur A Dugoni School of Dentistry University of the Pacific.
  • Dental Hygiene Clinic West Coast University
  • San Joaquin Valley College
  • Dental Hygiene Clinic Foothill College
  • Community Dental Hygiene Clinic Diablo Valley College.
  • Santa Rosa Junior College
  • Taft College
  • Concorde Career College
  • Southwestern College
  • Carrington College
  • Sacramento City College
  • Cabrillo College
  • Chabot College
  • Fresno City College
  • Shasta College
  • Cerritos College
  • Cypress College
  • Pasadena City College
  • Moreno Valley College
  • Loma Linda University
  • Oxnard Community College
  • Oxnard Community College
  • Truckee Meadows Community College

#1. Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry University of Southern California.

  • Location: Los Angeles.
  • Program Duration: 4 Years BSc and 16 months MSc.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Bachelor’s and Master’s.

Dental hygiene at the University of Southern California’s School of Dentistry is one of the most well-known in Los Angeles.

USC offers high-quality dental education tutored by experts, authors, and editors who have a valuable contribution to dental science. 

Studying dental hygiene at the University of Southern California’s School of Dentistry will afford students the opportunity to learn other dental specialties.

USC is ideal for students who want to go for a Bachelor’s or Master’s program in dental hygiene.

BSc in dental hygiene at USC requires you to have 76 credits in dental hygiene and 12 in general education courses. 

MSc in dental hygiene at USC allows you to do a part-time or full-time study to suit your pace.

Hence the reason why the University of Southern California’s School of Dentistry is one of the best accredited dental hygienist schools in Los Angeles.

#2. Arthur A Dugoni School of Dentistry University of the Pacific.

  • Location: San Francisco
  • Program Duration: 3 Years BSc
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Bachelor’s.

Studying at the University of the Pacific’s San Francisco campus will mean studying in an environment with up-to-date state-of-the-art facilities.

University of the Pacific’s San Francisco campus only offers a bachelor’s program in dental hygiene.

The BSc dental hygiene program at the University of the Pacific’s San Francisco campus trains students on how to become dental hygienist in California. 

Divided into 3 sections, the first year exposes students to components of liberal arts, the second year introduces them to the dental hygiene coursework onwards. 

Graduating from the University of the Pacific’s San Francisco campus dental school will heighten your problem-solving skills and help you become an efficient member of a dental team. 

#3. Dental Hygiene Clinic West Coast University 

  • Location: Orange County, Anaheim.
  • Program Duration: 34 Months BSc.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Bachelor’s.

If you’re looking for a college in California that offers online programs for dental hygiene then West Coast University may just be the school for you.

WSU ensures dental students have professional and personal growth in general education and dental hygiene.

Students study in advanced simulation labs and serve in dental clinics to prepare them for a career in assistance services dentistry.

Only an accelerated bachelor’s dental hygiene program is offered in the college ensuring you graduate faster than students in other colleges.

#4. San Joaquin Valley College

  • Location: Ontario & Visalia
  • Program Duration: 16 months
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

One of the accredited dental hygiene schools in California is the San Joaquin Valley College.

San Joaquin Valley College has dental clinics and small-sized classrooms that encourage one on one student-teacher interaction. 

Also, the associate degree offered at Sao Joaquin Valley College allows you to learn vital technical skills which include the use of charting software, intra-oral cameras, x-ray techniques, etc

how to become dental hygienist in california
how to become dental hygienist in california

#5. Dental Hygiene Clinic Foothill College

  • Location: Los Altos Hills
  • Program Duration: 4 Years BSc and 8 Semesters AS to BS-DH Program.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Entry-level Bachelor of Science and AS to BS-DH Program. 

One of the accredited dental hygiene California schools is the Foothill College which has been in existence since 1964.

This college trains you on how to become a dental hygienist in California.

By enrolling in any of its two bachelor’s programs you will be trained to meet the needs of dental hygiene out there.

The Entry-level Bachelor of Science Degree in Dental Hygiene will have you to study for the first two years in general education and then apply for the dental hygiene program.

You will need to complete 107 credits in core dental hygiene and upper-division general education courses. 

The AS to BS-DH Program is for students who have already completed an Associate degree in Dental Hygiene and are looking for a professional touch.

You will need to complete eight courses all online. 

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#6. Community Dental Hygiene Clinic Diablo Valley College.

  • Location: Pleasant Hill.
  • Program Duration: 2 Years.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

Prospective students seeking to study in one of the dental hygienist schools in Los Angeles should consider Diablo Valley College.

One reason why you should consider Diablo is the affordability and employment-ready training you will get.

Dental students enjoy internship opportunities provided by the university at the Native American Health Clinic and La Clinica.

As efficient as the educational system at Diablo Valley College is, it’s ideal that you know that the college is highly selective in its admission.

Ensure you have a track record in anatomy, physiology, microbiology, algebra, and nutrition with a GPA of 3.0.

#7. Santa Rosa Junior College

  • Location: Santa Rosa.
  • Program Duration: 5 Semesters.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate’s Degree.

If you want to become a critical thinker, problem-solver, and evidence-based decision-maker in the dental hygienist team, then Santa Rosa Junior College is ideal for consideration.

Why Santa Rosa Junior College is a great college for consideration is that students are sure to excel in the licensure exam with a 100% pass rate.

At Santa Rosa, Junior College students are furnished with dental hygiene skills through classroom lectures, lab sessions, and hands-on practice in the university’s clinic.

These exposures will prepare you for the demanding schedule of the dental team.

#8. Taft College

  • Location: Taft.
  • Program Duration: 2 Years.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

Taft College is one of the accredited dental hygiene schools in California which prepares graduates for a smooth career in dentistry.

The college offers an associate degree which lasts for 4 semesters. 

Students gain expertise in patient assessment, monitoring, and keeping records, evaluating, intervening, and planning patient dental hygiene plans, and ethics & laws that are relevant to the field. 

Once you’re done with your curriculum, you will take the national and state-level licensure exams to become a dental hygienist in California.

#9. Concorde Career College

  • Location: San Bernardino, Garden Grove & San Diego
  • Program Duration: 17 Months.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

At Concorde Career College students can only apply for an associate degree program in dental hygiene across its three campuses.

What makes Concorde Career College unique is the well-equipped labs, resource centers, and dental clinic.

To graduate from this discipline, you will need to complete a 111.5 credit hour program divided into 9 terms.

Focus is laid on preparing students for extraoral and intraoral exams, periodontal and dental exams, patient assessment, and checking vital signs.

#10. Southwestern College

  • Location: Chula Vista
  • Program Duration: 2 Years.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

Studying dental hygiene at Southwestern College will mean being trained by the best experienced and dedicated professionals in the field.

Courses in the dental hygiene program at SWC are offered in the fall of each year with the classroom clinical sessions.

The dental hygiene programs at Southwestern College cover clinical concepts, dental radiography, oral anatomy and physiology, periodontics, pain control, dental pharmacology, dental materials, community health, and ethics and laws relevant to the dental practice. 

#11. Carrington College

  • Location: Sacramento & San Jose
  • Program Duration: 2 Years.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

Next on our list of dental hygienist schools in Los Angeles, CA is Carrington College.

Having a legacy of quality healthcare education in California, Carrington College also offers one of the best training on how to become a dental hygienist in California.

The dental hygiene program at Carrington College is an associate program designed to help students gain technical skills relevant to the profession.

These skills include cleaning and scaling teeth, removing plaque and stains, applying fluoride and sealants, taking oral x-rays, recording patient data, and evaluating and planning an oral hygiene plan for patients. 

#12. Sacramento City College

  • Location: Sacramento 
  • Program Duration: 2 Years.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

Sacramento City College is one of the best dental hygienist schools in California.

This college is also one of the accredited dental hygiene schools in California with a curriculum embracing the current and changing trends in the industry. 

Students are exposed to real-world clinical experience by serving the local community.

To complete an associate degree in Sacramento City College, you need 39.5 credits of pre-requisite courses and 45.5 credits of dental hygiene courses. 

#13. Cabrillo College

  • Location: Aptos
  • Program Duration: 2 Years.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree.

Cabrillo College provides quality and affordable dental hygienist training in California with a 100% pass rate on the national and state licensure exams.

Due to their effectiveness, they only accept 22 students each year.

Dental hygiene coursework at Cabrillo College covers the anatomy of the oral cavity, oral health education, knowledge of dental materials, dental radiography, periodontics, dental terminology, law and ethics, dental insurance, pain management, and interim therapeutic restorations.

#14. Chabot College

  • Location: Hayward.
  • Program Duration: 2 Years.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree

Study at Chabot College and become a dental hygienist in California trained by the best hands.

To graduate, you need to complete 60.5 units in general as well as dental hygiene courses. 

#15. Fresno City College

  • Location: Fresno
  • Program Duration: 4 Semesters.
  • Dental Hygiene Programs Offered: Associate Degree. 

Next on the list of California dental hygiene schools that will train you to become a dental hygienist in CA is Fresno City College.

Fresno trains you to improve the oral health of the community by learning the needed skills and knowledge through extensive experiential learning sessions.

Other Dental Hygiene Schools in CA include;

  • Shasta College
  • Cerritos College
  • Cypress College
  • Pasadena City College
  • Moreno Valley College
  • Loma Linda University
  • Oxnard Community College
  • Oxnard Community College
  • Truckee Meadows Community College

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How Do I Become a Dental Hygienist in California?

In California, dental hygienists may be responsible for the application of preventative materials, oral health education, and treatment advice. As well as identification of pathologies and oral lesions, and the management of dental hygiene practices.

In order to operate as a dental hygienist in California, you must first obtain a license from the California Dental Hygiene Committee (DHCC). Here is the step-by-step guide on how to become a dental hygienist in California in 2022.

  • Complete a recognized dental hygiene program.
  • Pass the Written National Board Exam
  • Pass the Clinical Dental Hygienist Examination in California.
  • Also need to Pass the written examination administered by the Dental Hygiene Committee of California Law and Ethics.
  • Apply for a Registered Dental Hygienist license in California.
  • Maintain Your California Dental Hygienist License

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Hygienist Schools in Los Angeles, CA.

Are Dental Hygienists Currently Employed in CA?

Yes, about 17,880 dental hygienists are currently employed in California.

Where Can A Dental Hygienist Work in California?

Dental hygienists in California can work autonomously or what we know as independent practice or they can still affiliate with a dentist’s practice. 

Also, they can work part-time between hospitals and physicians’ practices.

Statistics show that these numbers and their place of practice in California!

  • Government    220
  • Offices of Physicians    160
  • Offices of Dentists    16,960

How Much Does a Dental Hygienist Earn in California?

How much a dental hygienist earn depends on the employer, level of experience and degree level

Basically, a dental hygienist’s yearly salary in California is a little above $109,970 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That accounts for $52.87 per hour and $9,160 per month.

However, other benefits dental hygienists get include vacation time and some type of health care coverage.

What Dental Hygienist Organizations & Associations in California Can I Join?

Dental Hygiene students who graduate from any of the best dental hygienist schools in California are advised to join the California Dental Hygienists’ Association (CDHA) or the California Dental Hygiene Educators’ Association (CDHEA).

What is the Required GPA to Get Into Dental Hygienist Schools In CA?

To become a dental hygienist in California, you need to enroll in any of the schools we have listed.

But keep in mind you need a 2.7 GPA to get into any of those schools.

Also, you need to take prerequisite courses such as biology, chemistry, and math.

How Do I Become A Dental Hygienist in California?

Going to any of the best-accredited schools is not enough to become a dental hygienist in California.

To become a dental hygienist in California, Applicants must:

  • Be a graduate of a board-approved and accredited Dental Hygiene program.
  • Complete the WREB dental hygiene clinical examination.
  • Complete approved courses in the administration of local anesthesia, soft tissue curettage, and nitrous oxide.
  • And finally, pass the National written examination.

Once the WREB application is completed, the applicant will receive a letter with the information regarding the written RDH law and ethics examination administered by the computer-based testing center (PSI). 

We hope this article has given you the information you need to apply to any of the best schools of dental hygiene in California.

Do well to share with friends and family and also follow our Facebook and YouTube pages for more information.

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