Becoming a Dental Hygienist in Idaho

The field of dental hygiene is a rewarding one that involves assisting dentists with their work. Dental hygienists clean teeth, apply bandages to sutures, operate equipment during dental procedures and discuss oral health with patients. To work as a dental hygienist in Idaho, one must pass a licensure exam and become a Registered Dental Hygienist (RDH).

Requirements for Becoming a Dental Hygienist in Idaho

Those who wish to become dental hygienists must attend a dental hygiene program accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). Only accredited schools qualify students to sit for the national licensing exam, which they must pass to become registered and begin working.

Dental Hygienist Programs in Idaho

The majority of educational programs for dental hygienists are two-year associate’s degrees, which are available at many community colleges and technical schools. The following programs are among those available to students in Idaho:

  • College of Southern Idaho. The College of Southern Idaho offers an associate’s degree in dental hygiene. Classes include ethics, hygiene theory and pathology, as well as clinical experiences.
  • Carrington College. Carrington’s associate’s degree in dental hygiene program typically takes students less than two years to complete. The program uses classroom instruction and hands-on training to help students learn the profession.

Find information on dental assistant schools in Idaho here.

State Licensure

Idaho-based dental hygienists must pass the National Board Examination as well as a regional test accredited by one of the following organizations:

  • Commission on Dental Competency Assessments (CDCA)
  • The Council of Interstate Testing Agencies, Inc. (CITA)
  • Central Regional Dental Testing Service, Inc. (CRDTS)
  • The Western Regional Examining Board, Inc. (WREB)

After successfully passing both tests, dental hygienists will be licensed and able to practice in the state of Idaho.

Popular Programs

Career Prospects and Salary Expectations

Jobs within the dental field are increasing, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicting growth of 4.8 percent from 2016 to 2026. A dental hygienist in Idaho makes an average of $74,490 per year.

AreaTotal EmployedMean Hourly WageMean Annual Salary
Boise City, ID700$35.31$73,440
Coeur d'Alene, ID170$38.66$80,410
Idaho Falls, ID160$35.02$72,850
Lewiston, ID-WA50$38.48$80,050
Logan, UT-ID40$25.82$53,700
Pocatello, ID110$32.35$67,290

Working as a Dental Hygienist in Idaho

Working as a dental hygienist involves interacting with new people on a daily basis and helping them receive the dental care they need. Dental hygienists work with their hands and are able to work in the medical field with less formal training than doctors, allowing them to enter an exciting field more quickly. Salaries are typically highest in larger metropolitan areas, such as Boise and Meridian, Idaho, though dental hygienists can find work at dental offices across the state.

College Listings

Boise City, ID

Carrington College-Boise

1122 North Liberty Street, Boise, Idaho 83704-8742
(208) 377-8080
http://carrington.edu/degrees/dental-hygiene/

The Associate’s program at Carrington College is taught at their Boise campus. This program of study is accredited by the ADA. The college has around 508 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The Dental Assisting program, with a duration of 83 credit hours, is the college’s largest program. The dental hygiene program has annual tuition fees of $14,425 and material costs of $285. The average completion time for the program is 9 months.

Pocatello, ID

Idaho State University

921 S 8th Ave, Pocatello, Idaho 83209
(208) 282-2700
http://coursecat.isu.edu/graduate/healthscience/dentalhygiene/

The Master’s degree program is imparted at the college’s Pocatello campus. This program of study is ADA accredited. Of the 13,852 students, about 14% are postgraduates. Typical in-state tuition fees are approximately $6,344 per year. Fees for out-of-state students are $18,676.

Idaho State University

921 S 8th Ave, Pocatello, Idaho 83209
(208) 282-2700
http://coursecat.isu.edu/undergraduate/divisionhealth/dentalhygiene/

The Bachelor’s degree program is imparted at the college’s Pocatello campus. This program of study is accredited by the ADA. Of the 13,852 students, about 14% are postgraduates. In-state tuition fees are approximately $6,344 per year. The fees for students from outside Idaho are $18,676.

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