The MATC Dental Hygiene Program prepares its graduates to become members of a dental health team dedicated to helping individuals maintain oral health and prevent disease. The Dental Hygienist is qualified by education and licensure to provide direct patient care prescribed by the dentist, including removing deposits and stains from the teeth, exposing and developing dental radiographs, and performing various other preventive and therapeutic services related to oral health care. The Dental Hygienist educates individuals and groups of patients in proper preventive measures and explains the relationship between oral health and overall health. The A.A.S degree program will prepare graduates to take the National Board Dental Hygiene Examination (NBDHE), the regional clinical exams, and state exams required to obtain licensure to practice.
The dental hygiene program includes general education and technical education directly related to the sciences of dental and dental hygiene that are necessary for the profession. Training will include classroom and clinical experiences that have an emphasis on professionalism, public health, and treatment of a variety of patients.
The MATC Dental Hygiene Program will prepare graduates to work in a variety of settings:
- Private dental offices
- Public health dental clinics
- Public and private schools
- Research and pharmaceutical sales
- Hospitals, long-term care facilities, and adult learning facilities
The MATC Dental Hygiene program will prepare graduates to work with a variety of patients:
- Children of ALL ages, including infants/toddlers
- Individuals with Special Needs:
- Mentally-Challenged - ADHD, ADD, Downs Syndrome, Autism
- Medically-Compromised – pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, heart conditions, cancer patients, diabetes
- Patients with dental implants, dentures, and appliances
Associate in Applied Science of Dental Hygiene (AAS)
Entry to the program is granted through a competitive admissions process. Each class is selected by the admissions committee and starts in August of each year.
The MATC Dental Hygiene Program is dedicated to educate Associate of Applied Science-level dental hygienists to assume positions of responsibility. The faculty of the department is committed to creating a quality educational environment that will facilitate the development of responsible professionals who can function effectively in a constantly changing society.
It is the philosophy of the Dental Hygiene Program that dental hygiene students be educated to their fullest potential; such education includes integrated curriculum courses in General Education, Basic Sciences, and Dental and Dental Hygiene Sciences. Clinical proficiency must be combined with the didactic course material to maximize the delivery of individualized care to diverse populations. The program is based on the philosophy that learning in a cooperative venture including concern for other human beings, mutual respect between faculty and students, and a joint activity which is positive and productive. For this philosophy to endure, students and faculty must pledge a willingness to trust each other and participate actively in the learning process. It is our sincere desire to create an attitude on the part of the graduate to express a commitment to lifelong learning and continued professional development, as well as service to the community.
The Manhattan Area Technical College Dental Hygiene Program subscribes to the belief of the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) that competency statements are essential to the structure and evaluation of a dental hygiene curriculum.
These competency statements, adapted from ADEA’s Competencies for Entry into the Profession of Dental Hygiene, 2010, describe the behaviors, abilities, and skills expected of a dental hygienist entering the profession. Competence is divided into several domains or areas:
- Core Competencies of the knowledge, ethics, skills, and values needed for the profession
- Health Promotion and Disease Prevention requiring the dental hygienist to be knowledgeable about effective health care delivery, emphasizing wellness
- Community Involvement planning, implementing, and evaluating programs to benefit the population.
- Patient Care, including sufficient knowledge and psychomotor skills to assess, diagnose, plan, implement and evaluate treatment.
- Professional Growth and Development, allowing the practitioner to increase patient/client access to care, improves quality of care, and adapt to the changing health care environment. The dental hygienist must be competent in communication, critical thinking and problem solving and use this competence to benefit the client/patient.