This Dental Hygienist Doubled Their Salary With One Thing…


Have you ever felt like you should be paid more?

Princess Dental Staffing specializes in helping dental candidates find permanent and temporary dental jobs, so we see a wide range of dental salaries! And we were surprised to see one dental hygienist go from making around $20 an hour to over $50 an hour. And we thought:

Wouldn't our readers like to know how they did that? 

Before we go into that, if you're curious, you might take a peek at the highest paying states for dental hygienist salaries.

Now, we're sure you're wondering how you can go from increasing your pay from $20 an hour to potentially $40 or $50 an hour, right?

First, a lot of factors go into your rate of pay:

  • Experience level
  • Certifications
  • Specific expertise
  • Type of industry or niche
  • Geographic location
However, there is one thing that is the single most determining factor of your pay.

Can you guess what that is?

If we are using the United States, for example, the pay range for a dental hygienist and dental assistant ranges drastically from state to state.  That's why we put together this full list of average Dental Assistant salaries

Have you guessed it yet? 

Well, in our most recent conversation with a dental hygienist brought to our attention how drastically a simple geographic shift changed her salary and her overall expectations in the field. 

But don't blame us for your moving costs once you've discovered this little secret...

Here’s Her Story...

For discretion to the individual that spoke with, we will be using a different name to represent her. We are going to use the name, Emma.

Emma was a dental hygienist working out of Alabama at the time. She was living off around $42,000 a year and was working to support her own family. It was enough that she could pay all her bills, go out to eat every once in a while, and still have a little bit of money left over to put into savings.

She had friends and family around and people she could lean on when times got tough as life tends to do.

However, as we all know, this past year made it hard for everybody, especially as a dental hygienist, because she had to be in the office to perform her job. 

So at the height of everything that was going on in the world, she lost her job.

She didn't know when the office might be re-opening its doors or if they had enough room to hire her back onto the staff. It was a blindside to her, just like everyone else that was affected. No one can fully prepare for everything that happened, and she had to burn through her savings to keep things afloat for both her and her family.

She started looking for jobs, working small temp jobs here and there to help supplement the income, all while submitting application after application.

She wasn't getting any callbacks for jobs within 50 miles of her, so she looked towards her entire state and considered the possibility of moving. Ultimately, the few hiring jobs had hundreds of applicants, and they were all paying around what she was making, or even a little less. Yet, now was not a time to be picky. 

After months of not hearing back from anyone, she decided that maybe the search should be a little wider and that she should do a little more research instead of just "casting a big net and hoping to catch a job." 

As she was researching and applying for jobs that were hiring and even calling practices that weren't necessarily hiring at the time, she came to a shocking realization.


She lived in one of the least paying states for dental hygienists according to Forbes...

She felt like she couldn't catch a break. If she was doing the same job in another state, would she have had more money saved up? Would it have made this situation easier instead of feeling like treading water?

She decided she wanted to take some of this control back and did her own research to find some of the states with the highest paying jobs while still balancing temp jobs on the side for income.

She was calling practices in states on the other side of the country while trying to balance time zones. She was calling states like Oregon, New Hampshire, Maine, and more of the top 10 paying states.

She looked for full-time permanent positions in the states that she wanted to work, all while still balancing temp jobs in the area.

Until one practice decided to give her a chance based out of the state of New York. Emma had never been to New York, didn't know anything about it, but new with the condition of everything; she had to give it the best chance she had.

Even with everything that was going on...

The only condition was that she had to be ready to work in two weeks' time. After a lot of consideration, and fast apartment hunting, Emma and her family rented some moving vans and started driving.

She now makes more than double what she used to in a year. She's able to put a lot of that money towards rebuilding her savings, putting money away for her kids, and towards making their house a home.

All while being in a state where there are even more opportunities if she decides that she wants to work in New York City itself or around the area.

Sometimes in the hardest of situations, it requires the scariest leap of faith.

Next Steps

We want to make sure that you're not alone in those job searches, so we have put together resources to help you on your job search!

You can view our job hunting tips here!

Posted in dental hygienist at 04/14/2021 05:54 PM