Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene
The Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene Programs prepare graduates to function as dental auxiliaries.
The Dental Assisting program prepares the student to function as a dental assistant under the supervision of a dentist. As a member of the dental health team, the dental assistant is responsible for providing such services as assisting the dentist with operative and surgical procedures, manipulation of dental materials, taking radiographs, providing oral health instructions and performing office management tasks.
Dental Assisting students will be awarded a Diploma in Dental Assisting and will be eligible to take the Dental Assisting National Board (DANB). Graduates will also be certified in radiation health and safety, coronal polishing and expanded duties (lab competency). The dental assisting curriculum includes courses in general education as well as dental assisting as required by the Commission on Dental Accreditation. The program provides comprehensive educational experiences through lectures, clinical externship rotations, laboratory and related study.
Progression in the Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene Program is contingent upon the achievement of a grade of “C” or better in each (DAS) course, (DAH) course, and approved science courses.
The Dental Hygiene Program prepares the student to function as a dental hygienist on a dental auxiliary team under the supervision of a dentist. The curriculum includes content areas in general studies, biomedical sciences, dental sciences, clinical sciences, radiography, periodontology, and dental hygiene clinical experience. The program provides comprehensive educational experiences through lectures, clinical, and related study in order that graduates may apply scientific knowledge in the performance of dental hygiene procedures.
Students must achieve a minimum grade of "C" in each (DHG) course, (DAH) course, and approved science courses.
Upon completion, graduates are eligible to apply to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination (NBDHE). A certificate in Coronal Polishing is awarded upon successful completion of DHG 130. An AAS degree and Local Anesthesia and Nitrous Oxide Sedation Certificate is awarded upon successful completion of the total curriculum. As the only licensed dental auxiliaries, dental hygienists may be employed in dental offices, clinics, dental schools, public health, and government agencies.
The programs are accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation, a specialized accrediting body of the American Dental Association. The commission is nationally recognized by the U.S. Department of Education to accredit dental and dental related educational programs at the post-secondary level.
Coronal Polishing Certificate
The Coronal Polishing Certificate offers students the opportunity to earn a credential demonstrating competency in the dental auxiliary procedure of coronal polishing. This procedure is defined in the regulations established by the Kentucky Board of Dentistry in 201 KAR 8:571 as “the final stage of a dental prophylaxis on the clinical crown of the tooth after a dentist or a hygienist has verified there is no calcareous material.” This certificate will be awarded after successful completion of DHG 130, which fulfills all requirements for Coronal Polishing training mandated by the Kentucky Board of Dentistry for registered Dental Assistants. This credential provides an opportunity for those individuals that exit the Dental Hygiene Program prior to degree completion the ability to demonstrate clinical competency in this procedure and enhances workforce skills.
Local Anesthesia and Nitrous Oxide Sedation Certificate
The Local Anesthesia and Nitrous Oxide Sedation Certificate offers students the opportunity to earn a credential demonstrating basic competency in the administration of block and infiltration anesthesia and nitrous oxide sedation under the direct supervision of a licensed dentist. The Local Anesthesia and Nitrous Oxide Sedation Certificate will be awarded upon graduation from the AAS degree program in Dental Hygiene. This certification provides graduates of the AAS degree program in Dental Hygiene a formal certificate of completion to be used for the purposes of licensure throughout the country.
Offered in East Consortium - Credential granted by Big Sandy Community & Technical College but also taught at Somerset Community College.
Offered in West Consortium - Credential granted by Big Sandy Community & Technical College and West Kentucky Community and Technical College.