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Dental Hygienist Salaries in the U.S. by State

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Kelly Brown
5 Sources Cited

Dental Hygienist Salaries in the U.S.

Dental hygienist salaries vary across the United States. People in the lower range earn around $50,000 a year. People in the upper 10 percent earn between $90,000 and $100,000 a year.

Other factors to consider include benefits like sick leave, vacation time, and retirement contributions. These also vary by state and from employer to employer. 

Regardless of where you live, the dental industry is expected to grow. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects approximately 4,000 dental jobs will open up over the next decade, including hygienist positions.1 

Dental hygienists assist with a variety of tasks. For example, they:

  • Perform routine teeth cleanings
  • Take X-rays
  • Assist dentists in more invasive procedures like fillings and root canals
  • Document patient treatment plans
  • Educate patients on proper oral hygiene techniques and disease prevention
  • Help with various administrative tasks 

Dental hygienists must also be experts in:

  • Mechanic proficiency
  • Communication
  • Dexterity

Hygienist Salaries by State

State Annual mean wage
Alabama   49,200
Alaska   115,050
Arizona   83,860
Arkansas   65,730
California   109,970
Colorado   87,140
Connecticut   85,610
Delaware   86,280
District of Columbia   94,650
Florida   67,870
Georgia   66,330
Hawaii   86,970
Idaho   76,670
Illinois   74,210
Indiana   72,640
Iowa   73,480
Kansas   69,790
Kentucky   61,140
Louisiana   69,980
Maine   68,110
Maryland   87,540
Massachusetts   84,850
Michigan   66,500
Minnesota   76,410
Mississippi   56,650
Missouri   69,730
Montana   77,010
Nebraska   70,650
Nevada   89,360
New Hampshire   82,150
New Jersey   88,150
New Mexico   78,410
New York   76,890
North Carolina   71,140
North Dakota   75,160
Ohio   68,880
Oklahoma   76,710
Oregon   86,450
Pennsylvania   69,470
Rhode Island   75,980
South Carolina   61,360
South Dakota   73,390
Tennessee   65,820
Texas   77,590
Utah   69,050
Vermont   74,010
Virginia   82,530
Washington   95,450
West Virginia   61,530
Wisconsin   70,020
Wyoming   66,280

10 Best Paying States for Dental Hygienists

Area Name Annual mean wage
   
Alaska   115,050
California   109,970
Colorado   87,140
District of Columbia   94,650
Hawaii   86,970
Maryland   87,540
Nevada   89,360
New Jersey   88,150
Oregon   86,450
Washington   95,450

Benefits of Becoming a Dental Hygienist

If you live in one of the top-paying states for dental hygienists, you can earn a comfortable salary in a rewarding field. 

But keep in mind: Some of these states have higher costs of living. This means earning more might not be as significant as it seems when you consider housing costs and other expenses. This includes states like Hawaii, California, Alaska, and those along the East Coast.

In addition to the average salary, working as a dental hygienist has other benefits. Most importantly, they care for people and help them improve their oral health. 

Being a dental hygienist is a social job. Many hygienists enjoy talking with their patients and catching up on what’s going on in their lives between visits.

Dental hygienists also have a significant amount of job security. Dental care is an ongoing concern for everyone. There will always be a need for teeth cleanings and other treatments. Many dental hygienists choose their careers for this reason. 

Many hygienists also enjoy that they get to work in the dental industry without the expensive commitment of an advanced degree. 

Requirements vary from state to state. But many hygienists enter their careers with an Associate’s Degree and several months of training from an accredited program. A dentist, on the other hand, requires at least 8 years of intense schooling.

Many dental hygiene programs even help with job placement upon completion. They provide access to ongoing job alerts for graduates. 

Last updated on April 21, 2022
5 Sources Cited
Last updated on April 21, 2022
All NewMouth content is medically reviewed and fact-checked by a licensed dentist or orthodontist to ensure the information is factual, current, and relevant.

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only cite from current scientific research, such as scholarly articles, dentistry textbooks, government agencies, and medical journals. This also includes information provided by the American Dental Association (ADA), the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
  1. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Dental Hygienists : Occupational Outlook Handbook: : U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.” Bls.gov, 13 Apr. 2018.
  2. Occupational Employment Statistics.” Data.bls.gov.
  3. How to Become a Dental Hygienist: Career Guide.” San Joaquin Valley College.
  4. Dental Team Careers | American Dental Association.” Ada.org, 2021.
  5. Working in Dentistry.” Carrington College, 26 Jan. 2015.
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