Career Paths

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Career Paths

The American Dental Hygiene Association has the following as the Definition of Dental Hygiene Practice:

“Dental Hygiene is the science and practice of recognition, prevention and treatment of oral diseases and conditions as an integral component of total health.”

Working in private dental offices is the primary place of employment for most dental hygienist. Here they work together with the dentist and other dental office staff to form a dental team. Today there are many other career paths that a dental hygienist can chose to pursue and a variety of practice locations which they can choose to practice. Dental Hygienists have more opportunities than ever before and it is up to the individual to decide what career path they want to pursue and how and where they want to put their education and clinical experience to good use. Here are a few of the possibilities:

  • Clinician
  • Corporate
  • Public Health
  • Researcher
  • Educator
  • Administrator
  • Entrepreneur

For more information about these career paths go to:

Each individual state has its own requirements for licensure and specific regulations.

For more information relating to the Scope of Practice and Employment Opportunities log on to

For information on licensing, continuing education and practice regulations visit the DHBC website (below).

Dental Hygiene Board of California