30 Apr

Dental hygienists are essential to maintaining a patient’s general oral health since they educate patients on good oral hygiene practices. Given the prevalent staffing challenges in healthcare, you may find yourself pondering how to hire the right dental hygienist from a pool of highly qualified candidates. Keep reading to get the best tips.

What types of dental hygienists are there?

First things first: Identifying the different kinds of dental hygienists could help you determine which one is more suitable for the position you are looking to fill.      


Dental hygienists specializing in caries treat cavities by drilling the affected tooth, filling the cavity, and polishing the filling.     


Too many teeth in a patient’s mouth can cause more significant problems, so a dental hygienist specializing in hyperdontia needs to intervene.      


This disease causes inflamed gums rooted in poor oral hygiene, but this type of dental hygienist treats these patients and teaches them better ways to care for their oral health.      


Sometimes, bad breath is a symptom of an oral health problem called halitosis, and some dental hygienists have extensive experience treating the underlying causes of this condition.


Certain dental hygienists are responsible for slowing the progression of periodontitis by removing unhealthy tissue from a patient’s gums and instructing them in aftercare. 

How to hire the right dental hygienist + Tips

Now, then, let’s go over the steps to hire a dental hygienist and some tips to find the best fit.

Define the ideal dental hygienist

Before you start searching, you need to know precisely what you’re looking for. Imagine the ideal candidate profile, starting with qualifications and experience.

  • Qualifications

Most dental hygienists get an associate's or bachelor's degree in dental hygiene. After completing either of them, they need to pass written and clinical exams to obtain the license of whichever state they will work in. These are the very first requirements your potential candidates will have to meet. 

  • Experience

Whether experience is needed or optional is entirely up to you. Experienced professionals have extensive careers to back them up, but newcomers can demonstrate more initiative and enthusiasm during the recruiting process, which is always a good sign.      

Define your recruiting goals

You need to know how to approach the recruitment process, and the candidates need to know exactly what they are applying for, so establishing the detailed characteristics of the position before even thinking of listing the job.

  • Full-time or part-time

This and the specific shift hours are important to decide because they will screen out potential candidates who cannot manage the job with their other responsibilities.

  • In-house or staffing agency

You will have to decide about the hiring approach. Are you managing the entire process internally? Or are you considering contacting a staffing agency to help you find the best candidate? These are important questions to answer if you want to start the search.     

Write a job description

This step is crucial to get applications that are actually useful to move forward. To make a job posting effective, you need to be as accurate and specific as possible when choosing the words, summarizing the responsibilities, and naming every necessary skill.      

Define the interview process

Although you’re not obligated to stick strictly to it, it’s better to have a plan of what you want to ask the candidates. Some valuable questions can be about their last job and why they left, how they approach severe cases, and what makes an excellent dental hygienist, in their opinion.      

Start the interview process

When you finally have the best candidates face to face, give them time to think and answer the questions, and let them finish up the thought even when they stutter or they’re running out of time. After all, it’s normal to be nervous, so try to be calm and compassionate with them.      

Carefully select and onboard your new hire

Now, it’s time to select the best candidate, depending on your priorities. Perform a background check to verify the chosen candidate’s history and, once hired, get the onboarding process started, encouraging the rest of the staff to help the newcomer get familiarized with the workplace. 

Why hire a dental hygienist?

A dental hygienist plays a massive role in providing a patient with the best and most complete care, performing some pivotal tasks like developing teeth molds for dental procedures, maintaining the patient’s dental and medical histories and records, and preparing each dental chart. That’s why a dental hygienist is the perfect addition to any dental office.