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Dental Hygienist Salary

Women comprise the majority of Dental Hygienists in the United States. Individuals in this line of work make around $32.39 per hour on average. Individual bonuses, profit sharing and commission for Dental Hygienists — as high as $2K, $6K and $19K, respectively — each contribute to the degree of variation within overall compensation, ranging from $44K to $87K. The specific employer is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by the particular city and experience level. Medical benefits are awarded to more than a third, and more than two-fifths earn dental coverage. Work is enjoyable for Dental Hygienists, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.
$30,107 - $72,758
(Median)
30K
40K
51K
62K
73K
MEDIAN: $50,847
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%

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$24.06 - $42.17
(Median)
24
28
32
38
42
MEDIAN: $32.00
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%

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Show Annual Salary Show Hourly Rate

National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$30K$60K$90K
Salary
$30,107 - $72,758  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,412  
Profit Sharing
$484.79 - $5,865  
Commission
$589 - $19,489  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$44,305 - $87,143  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 855
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$21$42$63
Hourly Rate
$24.06 - $42.17  
   
Overtime
$0.00 - $60.99  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,412  
   
Commission
$589 - $19,489  
Profit Sharing
$484.79 - $5,865  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$44,305 - $87,143  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 4,348
United States (change)

Job Description for Dental Hygienist

A Dental Hygienist’s responsibility is to help prevent dental related diseases in their patients. Dental Hygienists will usually work with a certified dentist to meet the oral health concerns of patients. Some basic job responsibilities and tasks include, giving patients routine cleanings in order to remove plaque and other caustic substances from all surfaces of the teeth, testing patients’ teeth for cavities and other abnormalities, assessment of the patient’s health history, applying anesthesia to patients going through surgery, applying different treatments such as fluoride in order to prevent future cavities and diseases, taking and developing dental X-rays in order to assess current and future dental problems, and assisting dentists with their work. It is also the responsibility of a Dental Hygienist to talk to their patients about proper dental care and promote good nutrition habits in order to prevent further dental health problems. Along with these hands on activities, Dental Hygienists also perform general documentation procedures and office management involving their patient’s documented information.

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Dental Hygienist Tasks

  • Record the presence of diseases or abnormalities.
  • Examine patients teeth and gums.
  • Teach patients how to practice good oral hygiene.
  • Remove soft and hard deposits from teeth.

Common Career Paths for Dental Hygienist


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Many Dental Hygienists move into a Pedodontic Dental Hygienist role, which does not lead to a big boost in pay. Pedodontic Dental Hygienists on average bring in a similar salary to Dental Hygienists. Dental Hygienists most often move into positions as Office Managers of Dental Offices or Registered Nurses. Office Managers of Dental Offices actually earn $25K less on average, however, and Registered Nurses earn $11K less per year than Dental Hygienists do.

Dental Hygienist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Dental Hygienist


Dominating the field, Family Dental, Aspen Dental, Heartland Dental Care, Dr. Jones, and DDS Inc. are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Dental Hygienists. Heading up the field in terms of compensation, DDS Inc. offers the most; Dental Hygienists earn $97K on average there. Dental Hygienists can also look forward to large paychecks at Pacific Dental Services Incorporated ($79K), Gentle Family Dentistry ($75K), and Dr. B ($71K).

Salaries are easily beat at Aspen Dental, where median pay comes to just $58K, the lowest in the field. What's more, with base pay starting at $46K and ending at $74K, range in salary is rather small. Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include Dr. Jones at $64K, Heartland Dental Care at $67K, and Family Dental Care, where $69K is the norm.

Popular Skills for Dental Hygienist


Survey participants wield an impressively varied skill set on the job. Most notably, facility with restorative, periodontal therapy, and Cleaning are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 20 percent, 14 percent, and 11 percent, respectively. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Spanish Language, Orthodontics, and Scaling. Those educated in Patient Education tend to be well versed in Radiology.

Pay by Experience Level for Dental Hygienist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Dental Hygienists with a lot of experience do not necessarily enjoy more money. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $61K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $68K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Dental Hygienists see a median salary of $69K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Old hands boasting more than twenty years of relevant experience report pay that is more or less commensurate with that extensive experience; average earnings for this group come out to approximately $72K.

Pay Difference by Location


Seattle is home to an above-average pay rate for Dental Hygienists, 39 percent higher than the national average. Dental Hygienists will also find cushy salaries in New York (+18 percent), Austin (+17 percent), Denver (+17 percent), and Portland (+15 percent). One of the biggest compensable factors for Dental Hygienists is geography, with workers in Pittsburgh earning a whopping 21 percent below the national average.

Related Job Salaries

Experience Affects Dental Hygienist Salaries




National Average
$66,000


Skills That Affect Dental Hygienist Salaries

restorative
up arrow 20%

periodontal therapy
up arrow 14%

Cleaning
up arrow 11%

Pedodontics
up arrow 9%

Periodontics
up arrow 4%

Anesthesia
up arrow 4%

Patient Education
up arrow 2%

Radiology
up arrow 1%

Pediatrics
up arrow 1%

National Average
$66,000

Scaling
up arrow 5%

Orthodontics
up arrow 6%

Spanish Language
up arrow 8%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 881 votes.

Gender

Female
97 %
Male
3 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
7%
1-4 years
31%
5-9 years
17%
10-19 years
22%
20 years or more
22%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 35% dental benefits Dental: 44%
vision benefits Vision: 11% employee benefits None: 42%