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Prepare for a job as a dental hygienist in less than two years.  Graduates are prepared to take the Dental Hygiene National Board, as well as state or regional clinical licensing examinations*

At a Glance

  • Earn an Associate Degree and prepare for licensure in less than 2 years

  • Hands-on training in dental hygiene

  • Offered at four locations in AZ, CA, and ID

  • Affordable tuition varies by location, learn more now

About the Program

What Will I Learn

Carrington College’s dental hygienist training program helps students develop the skills needed to provide comprehensive dental hygiene care. Additionally, students learn professional communication skills and knowledge of ethical standards and behavior. Students learn to analyze and apply advances in research to dental hygiene care. We encourage our students to participate in and provide leadership in community activities that promote optimal oral health. 

Upon completion of the Dental Hygiene program, graduates will be able to:  

  • Deliver comprehensive dental hygiene care to patients in a variety of professional settings via the DH process of care
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and professionalism

Program Outcomes

In Carrington College’s Dental Hygiene program, the combination of classroom work and hands-on training can give you the skills you need to succeed as a dental hygienist. Our program is built to give you the information and experience you need to be able to:

  • Remove tartar, stains, and plaque from teeth
  • Apply sealants and fluorides to help protect teeth
  • Take and develop dental x rays
  • Assess patients’ oral health and report findings to dentists
  • Document patient care and treatment plans
  • Educate patients about oral hygiene techniques, such as how to brush and floss correctly

Programs at Carrington College take as little as two years to complete. Students who graduate from Carrington College’s Dental Hygiene program are prepared to take the Dental Hygiene National Board, as well as state or regional clinical licensing examinations. Licensure qualifications may vary by state.*

*The College does not guarantee students will successfully pass these exams or be certified or licensed as a result of completing the program.


We’re proud to offer comprehensive dental hygiene education at four locations. 

Boise, Idaho

Mesa, Arizona

Sacramento, California

San Jose, California

To learn more about how you can attend Carrington’s Dental Hygiene program, request more information.

Career Opportunities

The job outlook for dental hygienists is bright. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of dental hygienists is expected to increase 11% between 2020 and 2030. This is much faster than the average for all occupations.1
.  And there are some reasons for this growth, including:

  • Ongoing research linking oral health and general health will continue to increase the demand for preventive dental services.
  • Cosmetic dental services have become increasingly popular. This trend is expected to continue as technologies allow for less invasive, faster procedures.
  • As the large baby-boom population ages and people retain more of their original teeth than previous generations did, the need to maintain and treat those teeth will continue to drive demand for dental care.

Dental hygienists work in a variety of settings, though most work in dental offices. Other places dental hygienists work include community health clinics and public health agencies. According to the BLS, many dental hygienists work part-time, instead of full-time, which means the job affords more flexibility1.

Cost & Financial Aid

Education is a major investment, but it’s an investment in your future. Every student comes to Carrington with unique financial needs. Carrington College is committed to helping you achieve your education goals. We participate in most financial assistance programs, both federal and state, as well as private financing. Each program has different requirements and application instructions. Student loans, grants and scholarships are available to those who qualify.

For complete information on current tuition costs, please see the Academic Catalog

The best way for us to understand your financial needs is to meet in person. Call (602) 492-1086 to set an appointment with our Student Finance Department so we can help you develop your personalized financial plan to achieve your educational goals.

Student Life at Carrington College

We know college is a big step. But education can be the first step in building a better future. Your instructors, administrators and fellow students are there to help if you ever hit a bump in the road along the way. Carrington College offers a lot of great student support services designed to help you succeed.

Student Finance

From scholarships and grants to loans, we will help you understand how to search and apply for financial aid2.

Tutoring and Study Groups

For help with schoolwork, your instructors and Student Success Center staff are often available for tutoring or you can join in an open student study group.

Externships, Clinical Rotations and Fieldwork

Most programs include an opportunity to learn in the real world before you even graduate! You’ll earn impressive experience that looks great on your resume.

Career Services

After graduation, we’ll help you with your career search with everything from resume writing help to job search support to interview tips.

Accreditation and Approvals

Carrington College is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges (ACCJC/WASC), 331 J Street, Suite 200, Sacramento, CA 95814; 415- 506-0234, an institutional accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and the U.S. Department of Education. Additional information about accreditation, including the filing of complaints against member institutions, can be found at

The Dental Hygiene programs at the Boise, Mesa, Sacramento and San Jose campuses are accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation. The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at 312 440 4653 or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611-2678.

The Commission’s web address is:

For comprehensive information on Carrington’s accreditation and approvals, visit

Read Our Career Guide On Dental Hygiene

Dental hygienists help people maintain a vital part of well-being: their oral health, which Mayo Clinic states is a direct link to overall health. Dental hygienists work on teams with dentists to provide dental patient treatment.

Dental Hygienist FAQ

How long does it take to become a dental hygienist?

While everyone’s education is different and time to complete a program can vary based on a number of personal factors, Carrington’s Dental Hygiene program can be completed in less than 2 years. 

How much does dental hygiene school cost?

Dental Hygiene program costs can vary depending on location, courseload and financial aid. For complete information on current program costs, please see the Academic Catalog

What is the difference between a dental assistant and a dental hygienist?

Dental assistants and dental hygienists both play important roles in dental offices. A dental hygienist spends a large portion of their time working with patients’ teeth. A dental assistant works under the supervision of a dentist and may handle more administrative tasks.  

What does a dental hygienist do?

Dental hygienists are licensed dental health specialists who provide preventive, educational and therapeutic services for the promotion of oral health and control of oral disease. They observe and record abnormalities and problems in patients’ mouths, take oral X-rays and apply fluoride and fissure sealants. Other tasks include providing periodontal therapies like root planing and removal of plaque, calculus, and stains from teeth.

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*The College does not guarantee students will successfully pass these exams or be certified or licensed as a result of completing the program.

  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Dental Hygienists, on the Internet at (visited October 05, 2021).  Data reflects a national projected percentage change in employment from 2020-2030 and may not reflect local economic conditions.
  2. Student loans, grants and scholarships are available to those who qualify.