“Polish” Your Dental Hygienist Resume Like a Pro
In a competitive job market where dental practices seek exceptional talent, your dental hygienist resume acts as your calling card—a gateway to unlocking a world of dental career opportunities. It should reflect the breadth and depth of your abilities, your dedication to maintaining the highest standards of oral care, and your passion for transforming smiles.
In this article, we’ll show you how to craft a dental hygienist resume that captures the attention of hiring managers and helps you land the dream job you’ve been aspiring to. We’ve included some examples and a free template to help you get started.
Start with a Professional Summary
The first step in creating a winning dental hygienist resume is to write your professional summary. This is where you can highlight your key qualifications, skills, and traits to demonstrate why you’re a good fit for a specific position.
Highly skilled dental hygienist with 5+ years of experience in providing comprehensive oral care. Skilled in performing periodontal assessments, delivering patient education, and utilizing the latest dental technology. Dedicated to delivering exceptional patient care and promoting optimal oral health.
Dedicated dental hygienist with three years of experience in a fast-paced dental practice. Skilled in using advanced dental tools and technology to remove plaque, calculus, and stains. Excited to join a dynamic team to support exceptional care and practice efficiency.
Emphasize Your Technical RDH Skills
When it comes to technical skills on your dental hygienist resume, our dental recruiting services team recommends highlighting specific competencies that align with the job requirements. Providing specific examples or accomplishments related to these skills can further enhance your chances of landing your dream RDH job.
Here are some examples of technical RDH skills that hiring managers generally appreciate seeing:
- Radiography: Skilled in intraoral and panoramic x-ray utilizing digital imaging systems for precise diagnosis and treatment planning.
- Infection Control and Sterilization: Expertise in OSHA guidelines, PPE usage, and proper handling, disposal, and sterilization of contaminated materials.
- Periodontal Assessment: Proficient in conducting comprehensive periodontal assessments, including probing depths, recession measurements, and clinical attachment level evaluations.
Highlight Your Clinical Experience
In the competitive field of dental hygiene, your clinical experience plays a pivotal role in demonstrating your expertise and competence as a dental hygienist. Employers value candidates who possess practical dental hygienist skills and hands-on experience in providing comprehensive care to patients. Here are some examples of how to showcase this in your resume.
- Successfully provided comprehensive dental cleanings, including prophylaxis, scaling, and root planing, to patients with diverse backgrounds and oral health conditions.
- Conducted oral cancer screenings and identified suspicious lesions, promptly referring patients for further evaluation and contributing to early detection and treatment.
- Proficiently applied dental sealants to protect and prevent tooth decay, particularly in vulnerable areas such as pits and fissures, providing patients with an extra layer of preventive care.
- Assisted in the placement and removal of dental restorations, including fillings and temporary crowns, while following strict infection control protocols and maintaining a sterile clinical environment.
Tailor Your RDH Resume to the Job
Every dental practice has unique requirements. As a dental hygienist, it’s essential to customize your RDH resume to showcase the skills and experience that align with the specific job description.
You can tailor your RDH resume by:
- Researching the dental practice: Gain insights into the dental practice’s mission, values, and services. Incorporate this knowledge into your RDH resume to showcase genuine interest and alignment with their goals.
- Modifying your job descriptions: Customize the descriptions of your previous dental hygiene roles to highlight relevant experiences. Emphasize responsibilities, tasks, and accomplishments that align with the desired qualifications. Use active verbs and specific numbers when possible to quantify your achievements.
- Including relevant certifications and CE courses: Showcase relevant certifications and continuing education courses, such as dental x-ray or infection control, to set yourself apart as a qualified candidate for the position.
When applying to dental hygienist jobs, take the time to carefully read the job requirements and incorporate relevant keywords and phrases to make your resume stand out. Here are some RDH resume examples of keywords and phrases tailored for dental hygienists:
- Clinical Expertise: Highlight your proficiency in clinical tasks by using phrases like “performing comprehensive dental cleanings,” “conducting periodontal assessments,” “administering local anesthesia,” “scaling and root planing procedures,” “applying fluoride treatments,” or “performing sealant applications.”
- Patient-Centered Care: Emphasize your commitment to providing exceptional patient care. Use phrases like “compassionate and gentle approach,” “building rapport with patients,” “customizing oral hygiene instructions,” or “educating patients on preventive oral care” to demonstrate your dedication to ensuring patients receive quality care.
- Dental Procedures: Include specific dental procedures you are skilled in, such as “oral cancer screenings,” “digital radiography interpretation,” “oral health education,” “nitrous oxide administration,” “digital scanning for impressions,” or “coronal polishing.”
- Software and Technology: Mention any dental software or technology you are familiar with, such as “Eaglesoft,” “Dentrix,” “digital imaging systems,” “intraoral cameras,” or “CAD/CAM systems.”
- Infection Control: Highlight your knowledge of and adherence to infection control protocols and safety standards by mentioning “strict adherence to OSHA guidelines,” “sterilization techniques,” “personal protective equipment (PPE) usage,” or “cross-contamination prevention.”
- Communication Skills: Emphasize your ability to communicate effectively with patients and dental professionals by using phrases like “clear and concise patient instructions,” “active listening skills,” “collaborating with the dental team,” or “excellent chairside manner.”
- Education: Mention your education and certifications, such as your dental hygiene degree, state licensure, or any additional certifications you have earned. Use phrases like “Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene,” “registered dental hygienist,” or “continuing education credits in periodontal therapy.”
Highlight Professional Development and Certifications
Staying up to date with the latest advancements and techniques is crucial in this rapidly evolving field. Highlight any additional certifications, continuing education courses, or professional memberships that demonstrate your commitment to professional growth. This section is especially important for entry-level dental hygienists to get their foot in the door.
- CPR and First Aid Certification: Holds a current certification in CPR and first aid, ensuring the ability to respond swiftly and appropriately in emergency situations to safeguard patient well-being.
- Local Anesthesia Certification: Successfully completed a recognized local anesthesia course, demonstrating expertise in administering local anesthesia for patient comfort during dental procedures.
- Radiography Certification: Holds a valid radiography certification, demonstrating proficiency in capturing high-quality dental radiographs and ensuring accurate diagnosis and treatment planning.
- State Licensure: Holds a valid state license as a registered dental hygienist, meeting all regulatory requirements and demonstrating compliance with professional standards of practice.
- Earned certification in laser-assisted periodontal therapy, expanding treatment options for patients with gum disease.
- Completed advanced periodontal therapy course, enhancing skills in scaling and root planing techniques.
In today’s competitive market, a well-crafted dental hygienist resume highlighting your skills and abilities will help you rise above the competition.