When you’re applying for a dental hygienist job, it’s important to review the common questions a hiring manager might ask you. While you can expect questions designed to get to know you as a person, hiring managers also ask questions related to your dental care experience. Knowing the types of questions interviewers are likely to ask can help you craft effective answers that showcase your candidacy. In this article, we list a number of dental hygiene interview questions you may receive, including a few with sample answers.
General Dental Hygiene Interview Questions
At the beginning of your interview, the hiring manager may ask questions to get to know you. They use these questions to get to know your personality, your career goals, and who you are as a person. Here are some common questions you may receive for a dental hygienist role:
- Tell me about yourself.
- Why are you leaving your current position?
- What is your greatest weakness as a dental hygienist?
- What interests you about cooperation with us?
- What skills do you think make you a good dental hygienist?
- What do you like best about being a dental hygienist?
- Where do you see yourself in five years?
- Are you interested in the salary range?
- What are your short and long term career goals?
- What are you looking for in an employer?
Questions about Experience and Background
Here are some questions interviewers may ask to determine how your experience matches the job requirements:
- What interests you about a career as a dental hygienist?
- How well do you know HIPAA?
- How would your previous manager describe your work ethic?
- What is your experience with educating patients about oral health?
- Where did you train as a dental hygienist?
- How long have you been working as a dental hygienist?
- What were your main responsibilities in your last role?
- Do you have experience in administering local anesthetics?
- What experience do you have with the interpretation of diagnostic tests?
- What responsibilities do you expect outside of providing dental care?
In-Detail Interview Questions
Towards the end of the interview, the hiring manager may ask questions to assess your dental expertise and determine how you might respond in certain situations. Here are some detailed questions you may receive regarding the dental hygienist role:
- What do you consider the most important thing about the job of a dental hygienist?
- Can you tell me when you had to resolve a conflict with a client? What happened and how did you resolve it?
- Share an experience when you identified the symptoms of gum disease.
- Describe the health education you provided that successfully improved the patient’s oral health.
- Explain how to maintain dental equipment.
- Share an experience when you successfully developed X-ray film.
- How do you calm anxious patients?
- Tell me about a time when you shared difficult information with a patient.
- How do you organize, plan and prioritize your work?
- Describe the time you discovered swollen lymph nodes.
- Tell me about a high-stress situation you dealt with. How did you resolve the situation calmly?
- Share a time when careful inspection of equipment and materials helped you solve a problem.
03 Interview Questions with Model Answers
Knowing the types of questions an interviewer might ask can help you prepare thoughtful and strategic answers in advance. Additionally, reviewing sample answers to common dental hygiene interview questions can help you think about your own answers. Here are some dental hygiene interview questions you may receive, along with sample answers to help you create your own answers:
1. What is your greatest strength as a dental hygienist?
Hiring managers ask this to see if your strengths align with the company’s needs and job duties. They also use it to compare your greatest strengths to other candidates. Use this question as an opportunity to share your best qualities and skills related to the dental hygienist role. Answer confidently and clearly to reassure hiring managers of your strength as a candidate.
Example: “I believe my greatest strength as a dental hygienist is my attention to detail. I always check my work multiple times to ensure accuracy. I also believe my interpersonal skills are an asset to this job. I am not only concerned with providing quality service to our patients , but I am also committed to engaging with my coworkers so that we can create a positive work environment and provide excellent care to our clients.”
2. Why should we hire you as a dental hygienist?
This question helps hiring managers evaluate your confidence in the profession. They also want to know that you are interested in the role and that you know what they do as a company. Consider what makes you a unique candidate. For example, you can mention any industry achievements, training or your ability to speak a second language. Additionally, consider asking a family member or friend what makes you different from other candidates.
Example: “You should hire me as a dental hygienist because I am very dedicated to the field, graduated at the top of my class, and have already demonstrated success in this career. I have the knowledge to help your clinic stand out and provide clients with the best dental services. I also have a proven track record of easily adapting to changes in the industry.”
3. How do you educate patients about proper oral hygiene?
When interviewers ask this question, they are trying to gauge your dental care experience. They also use this question to determine if your oral health philosophy aligns with that of their clinic. Be specific about your oral care routine and emphasize your ability to encourage patients to take good care of their teeth. In addition, emphasize your ability to adjust teaching to meet the needs of each patient.
Example: “I demonstrate the best cleaning and flossing techniques directly on the patient’s teeth. I tailor each technique to suit the patient’s age and dental needs. I then have each patient practice while I supervise and provide corrections as needed. I hope that every patient leaves the clinic knowing that they are taking good care of their teeth thanks to my teaching.”
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