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3 Secrets To Becoming A Successful Temporary Dental Hygienist

3 Secrets To Becoming A Successful Temporary Dental Hygienist

By: Caitlin Grieder, The RDH Temp

Whether you are fresh out of hygiene school or a seasoned hygienist, temping can be intimidating. Why so? Because it comes with many unknowns, but I'm here to tell you that you can do it!

Despite what you may have heard about temping, it can be a really great employment choice for many dental hygienists.

So, let's get into it.

Be organized

Don't underestimate the need to be organized.

Pretty much everyone has a smart phone with a calendar, however, I would highly recommend you get yourself a cool, hip planner.

Yes, a planner. Like the one you write in with a pencil or pen, but preferably pencil. Because your schedule changes, jobs get cancelled, and jobs get added to your schedule, a pencil is best. I also find that events disappear from my iPhone calendar. Does that happen to anyone else? Or just me?

So that's why I think having a hard copy of your schedule is best.

You don't want to be that hygienist that double books herself because she didn't take the time to stay organized because trust me, it's happened! ...Maybe one or two times.

Be (at least) 15 minutes early

Treat these 15 minutes like gold. If your first patient is at 8:00, please don't go running into the office at 7:59 or worse 8:01. This won't benefit you and it most certainly won't make the office very happy.

This is your first impression so please make it a good one by being 15 minutes early. This is also your chance to learn as much as you can about the office to make your day go smoothly before your first patient comes.

Be on your best behavior

Yep it's a job and if you're like most people, you would rather be anywhere else, but don't let that show. Remember this blog is all about being a successful temp?

I've been a hygienist since 2011 and a full time temp since 2017. I've worked with other temps that just showed up as a body to the office and nothing else.

So be kind, be courteous, and do a great job that you can be proud of. That way, you will stand out and you best believe the office will request you back!

Want to learn more? Find more tips and tricks from Caitlin at

About the author

Caitlin Grieder

Caitlin is a dental hygienist in Pennsylvania. She graduated in 2011 from Manor College and hasn't looked back. She absolutely loves being a hygienist even though her back doesn't sometimes. Her blog will help you to be your best temp whether you just graduated or have been a hygienist for 20+ years.


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