The Top 25 Online Healthcare Schools & Colleges

March 20th, 2012


The healthcare industry is one of the fastest growing and most lucrative fields to be employed in, with demand skyrocketing and the opportunities for qualified healthcare professionals growing every day. A degree or qualification in healthcare can help you enter this booming field and embark on a thoroughly rewarding and prosperous career.

However, taking the first step onto the healthcare career ladder isn’t easy, as courses can be expensive and time-consuming. Fortunately, a variety of fully accredited and nationally recognized universities and career colleges now offer online healthcare programs and degrees at an affordable price. Online students have the benefits of being able to work from their home and at their own pace, meaning that their studies won’t have to interfere with day jobs, family commitments or other responsibilities.

To help you find the best higher education opportunities, our team at HealthcareColleges.net has rounded up 25 of the best online healthcare colleges, based on their reputation, credentials, affordability and the quality and variety of healthcare related programs that they offer. Find the perfect healthcare program for you from one of our Top 25 Healthcare Colleges below.

The 25 Top Online Healthcare Colleges

  • Robert Morris University – Robert Morris University is a nationally recognized university that offers fully accredited online courses. RMU designs its online programs to match the highly competitive and challenging standards of their non-online courses. Therefore, graduating students are well equipped to tackle the workforce with the confidence of knowing that they have received a highly respected education and qualification. Available online healthcare programs include an MS in Nursing Education and a BS in Health Services Administration.  These programs are accredited by national academic bodies and can be taken on either a full or part-time basis
  • University of Illinois at Chicago – The University of Illinois at Chicago is revered for being one of the top public universities in the country. UIC Online has a long history of providing access to quality online education and maintains the prestigious education that is found at UIC’s non-online programs. This online component of the University of Illinois at Chicago offers multiple online healthcare programs, such as their Health Information Management IBHE Certificate or their Master of Science in Informatics. Fully accredited and led by esteemed faculty, the University of Illinois at Chicago offers a top education from the comfort of the student’s home.
  • Arizona State University Online – Arizona State University continually ranks as one of the top universities in the country and its online programs are taught by the same faculty and with the same content as to be found on their campuses. Students at ASU Online will graduate with the security of having a degree from a nationally recognized and respected institution. The school offers a wide range of online healthcare programs to choose from, including a BA in Health Sciences, a BS in Nursing and a Doctor of Behavioral Health. As an online student, students can enjoy low tuition rates and the convenience of six start dates throughout the year for its online programs.
  • Keiser University / Keiser eCampus – Keiser University & Keiser’s eCampus Online offer on campus and online course. Keiser’s students enjoy the convenience of not having to juggle multiple classes simultaneously or having to sacrifice other commitments such as work and family. Various healthcare programs are available such as an AA in health services administration, AS in medical assisting, BS in Health Sciences and a M.S.N in Nursing. Keiser’s healthcare programs are individually accredited by health related accrediting associations, so students will earn a healthcare qualification that is official, authentic and highly marketable.
  • California InterContinental University – Cal University is a fully accredited online university that prides itself in providing innovative online programs for future business and healthcare professionals. The school boasts an impressive 72% graduation rate for the year of 2011, along with exceptionally affordable tuition rates. Cal University’s signature healthcare program is their MBA in Healthcare Management and Leadership. All courses are taught by distinguished experts in their field.
  • University of the Southwest – University of the Southwest has a renowned reputation for being at the forefront of distance education. Placing just as much attention and importance in online students as in traditional students promises that USW’s distance learners will receive a highly individualized education. The University of the Southwest offers an online Master’s of Science in Education Mental Health counseling and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Healthcare Management.
  • Ashford University – Ashford University regularly ranks as a top online university and has a plethora of healthcare degrees and programs to choose from. Notable programs include their BA in Health Care Studies, BA in Adult Development and Masters of Arts in Health Care Administration. Students at Ashford University receive can be proud to receive their online education from one of the most globally respected online institutions in the world.
  • University of the Rockies – University of the Rockies prides itself as being a leader in graduate studies, with programs offered both online and on campus. Online students can enjoy very reasonable tuition benefits and be secure in knowing that the University of the Rockies is accredited by multiple academic bodies and associations. Health related online programs available include a Masters of Arts in Psychology and a Doctor of Psychology with a wide range of health specializations, like Mental Health Administration and Health and Wellness Psychology.
  • Brookline College – Brookline College is an accredited vocational school that trains its students to be well equipped for their chosen profession. With a firmly established online division, Brookline’s online students enjoy access to 24/7 technical support as well as the school’s online library and resources. Online healthcare courses include a Master of Science Degree in Nursing and a Diploma in Medical Insurance Billing and Coding.
  • Miller-Motte College – Miller-Motte’s online division not only provides an excellent online education to its students, but also an in depth training and preparation program for their future careers. Miller Motte College offers extensive career services that both traditional and online students can utilize. Multiple 100% online healthcare programs are available here, such as an Associate of Applied Science Online Degree Program in Electronic Medical Records and an Allied Health Management Degree.
  • Beckfield College – Beckfield College is a career college with a promising slogan of “Small Campus Feel…Online Convenience.” The school offers a wide variety of healthcare related courses, from an Associates in Applied Science in Health Science Administration to a Diploma in Medical Assisting.
  • CCSD – California College San Diego offers numerous healthcare certifications and qualifications, including a Bachelor of Science Completion in Nursing, Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management, Master of Science in Nursing Administration and a Master of Science in Nursing Education. Students benefit from the flexible nature and structure of CCSD’s online programs, allowing them to earn their degrees in a flexible format.
  • APOU – Azusa Pacific Online University is a fully accredited school providing education programs taught with a Christian Worldview. APOU’s students receive a high quality online education that integrates their core Christian values and views. APOU’s current healthcare programs include an Associate of Science in Health Sciences and a Pre-Nursing Health Certificate.
  • College America – College America has been helping its students train for their chosen professions since 1964. The school offers a host of healthcare related online programs at the associate’s, bachelor’s and master’s degree level. Standout programs include their Associates Degree in Medical Specialties, a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing Administration and a Master’s Degree in Nursing Administration.
  • Brandman University – Brandman University is part of the prestigious Chapman University System and offers several exclusively online programs in the healthcare field. These include an Undergraduate Certificate in Health and Wellness, an MBA Business Administration in Health Administration and a Post Doctoral Certificate in Adult Primary Care NP. Brandman’s online students receive an exceptional education from a respected institution. The school’s programs thoroughly equip its students for their chosen profession.
  • CHCP – The College of Health Care Professions is dedicated to providing the very best training for future health care professionals. The school currently offers two healthcare related programs; a Health Information Technology Certificate Program and a Health Information Technology Management Associates Program. CHCP readjusts its syllabus and teaching plans every semester to meet the ever changing demands of the healthcare industry, so be sure to check back for future updates to their course offerings.
  • Ultimate Medical Academy – Ultimate Medical Academy’s online division offers a broad array in healthcare industry vocational degrees and training programs. Their highly affordable online programs encourage student success by providing full access to career services resrouces where students can apply for jobs, get career guidance and attend valuable networking events.
  • Drexel Online University – Drexel Online University is the online component of the prestigious Drexel University, a school that consistently ranks as a top college both nationally and internationally. A host of innovative healthcare-related programs are available online here, such as an MBA in Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Management or a BS in Health Services Administration.
  • Carrington College – CC focuses on training professionals for the healthcare industry, offering an online Associate degree in Health Care Administration as well as in Health Information Technology. Because it’s affordable and provides a flexible class schedule, Carrington College is an ideal choice for those looking to complete an online associate degree in the healthcare field.
  • Kaplan University – Kaplan offers predominantly distant learning courses and has a global reputation for providing excellent health care programs. Available healthcare programs include a Master of Science in Health Education, a Bachelor of Science in Health and Wellness and an Associate of Applied Science in Medical Assisting.
  • Virginia College – Virginia College has both in-person and online programs geared towards training its students for their desired professions. Health related programs include an online Associate degree in Healthcare Reimbursement and a Master of Business Administration – Healthcare.
  • DeVry University – DeVry  has over 90 campuses across America and provides both in-person and online programs. Online health programs range from associate to bachelor degrees and include innovative programs such as an Associate degree in Health Information Technology and a Bachelors degree program in Healthcare Informatics.
  • Capella University – Capella is an exclusively online school that boasts a huge range of health specialization degrees to choose from. Students can study for certificates, bachelors, masters, MBA’s and doctorates degrees from throughout the healthcare industry. Capella’s students graduate with the security of knowing that their school is both fully accredited and also in command of an excellent reputation.
  • Liberty University Online – Liberty University Online hails itself as the largest, non-profit online university. Liberty offers a substantial number of online healthcare related programs. Students can enjoy low tuition rates as well as exciting programs like their Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Healthcare Administration or the Master of Public Health in Nutrition.
  • Ivy Bridge College – Ivy Bridge College is part of the prestigious Tiffin University system. The school offers a 100% online Associate degree in Healthcare Administration. Each of Ivy Bridge’s students are assigned a Success Coach to help them reach their educational goals, and especially to help them through the process of transferring to a four-year school of their choice. A student at Ivy Bridge College not only receives a topnotch education, but also has the benefits of knowing that their college is dedicated to helping them achieve success by transferring to top rated schools throughout the country.

Top Healthcare Colleges – School Ranking Factors

Our list of the best online healthcare colleges was ranked based upon multiple factors, including:

1. Quality of Teaching

Every school featured on our list only hires the best in educational professionals. Students never have to worry about being taught by a master’s student or a teaching assistant at one of the above schools (as they might encounter at a regular brick and mortar school), as all of the school’s only hire professors that have many years of teaching experience behind them. What’s more, these schools usually hire professors that also have direct experience working in the field of healthcare themselves. Therefore, students studying at one of these schools can be rest assured that they are being taught by fully qualified professors that have both experience teaching and working in healthcare.

2. Program Flexibility

All of the above mentioned schools offer exclusively 100% online programs which makes them ideal for people with busy lifestyles. Students can enjoy the flexibility of furthering their education without having to give up their day job, as each listed program allows students to do their studies and homework at any time of the day. Students can thus study before or after work and at the weekends or even during their lunch hour. Many of the programs also offer flexible completion dates, so students can study at their own pace and graduate from their program when they feel they are ready to do so.

3. Accreditation Statements

Each school is fully accredited by respected and official academic bodies. This means that students who gain qualifications from any of the above mentioned institutions will have gained a qualification that is just as effective and authentic as a qualification earned form a brick-and-mortar school. Students graduating from one of these schools will just be  marketable as a student that attended a traditional in-person school and their online education won’t affect their chances of gaining employment in their respected field.

4. Tuition Affordability

Students studying at any of the healthcare schools on our list will undoubtedly save a lot more money on their education than if they had attended a brick-and-mortar school. Not only are online education fees usually substantially lower than in-person school fees, but all of our listed schools offer generous financial aid programs as well as scholarship opportunities. What’s more, online students won’t necessarily have to give up their regular job to complete their education and will save additional money by not having to commute daily to class or seek extra accommodation such as a dorm room.  All in all, completing a healthcare qualification online is very cost effective and shouldn’t leave the student in an overwhelming amount of debt.

What Are the Next Steps?

Use our list of top 25 online healthcare colleges to find the ideal healthcare program for you. Do some research and compare programs until you find the perfect fit. Contact admissions advisers at each of the schools you’re interested in to receive additional information about the specific programs, scholarships, discounts and other offerings at hand from each college.

Our team at HealthcareColleges.net wishes you the best in your healthcare school search. Good luck out there!

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Top Ten Healthiest Vegetables

March 12th, 2012

Everyone knows that vegetables are healthy and an essential component to a daily diet. They can help reduce weight, provide more energy and even fight off diseases such as cancer and diabetes. A recent study has even shown that eating plenty of vegetables can lead to natural, healthy glowing skin.

I learned a lot about vegetables while doing a a paper on healthiest foods when I was studying for my online degree program. Learning about the healing and health benefits of vegetables really encouraged me to incorporate more vegetables into my daily diet. In fact, I found my research so inspiring that I am now seriously considering gaining a dietician qualification.

Based on my research, here is a comprehensive top ten list of vegetables that can boost your general health:

1. Broccoli

Broccoli is one of the healthiest green vegetables and is known for having cancer fighting properties. What’s more, it also provides plenty of calcium and vitamin C as well as folic acids.

2. Collared Greens

Another top healthy green that’s made our vegetable list are collared greens which have exceptionally high health value. One of the most healthy vegetable out there, collared greens are revered for their high levels of vitamin C, fiber as well as various immune strengthening nutrients.

3. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes far surpass regular potatoes in terms of being a healthy vegetable, and contain lots of antioxidants which can help fight off cancerous cells and can even lessen the effects of asthma. Sweet potatoes also contain lots of iron, calcium and fiber.

4. Asparagus

One of the healthiest vegetables around, asparagus is very low in calories and contains fiber and vitamin B6. It also is known for helping keep skin clear while being very low in sodium.

5. Eggplant

Eggplant has been shown to reduce blood cholesterol levels as well as block the formation of free radicals.  Known as one of the most heart-healthy vegetables, studies have suggested it can reduce an individuals chance of a heart attack and improve overall cardiovascular health.

6. Carrots

Known worldwide as one of the most healthy vegetables to eat, healthy properties of carrots include improving vision and helping to fend off cancer cells. They also help regulate blood sugar levels and keep the colon healthy.

7. Kale

Kale is known for containing powerful antioxidants and for preventing certain cancers, including ovarian cancer. Many dieticians believe this to be one of the healthiest vegetables you can find due to its high levels of vitamin K, vitamin C, calcium and the cancer fighting sulforaphane compound.

8. Spinach

Spinach made this healthy vegetables list thanks to its jam-packed content of vitamins and extremely high amount of antioxidants. Vitamins include vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, magnesium, iron, folate, zinc – and many others.

9. Onions

Onions are known for containing properties that can prevent osteoporosis and also being loaded with vitamin C and folate. Studies have also suggested that onions can help fight against diabetes and heart disease.

10. Squash

Squash made our healthy vegetables list because its nutrients are believed to fight off cancer, arthritis, asthma and heart disease. These disease fighting nutrients include vitamin C, potassium and calcium.

The health benefits of vegetables are endless and a healthy vegetable diet is vital for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. The great thing about all of the vegetables that made our list of healthy vegetables is that they are so versatile. Each of the above mentioned healthy vegetables can be steamed, boiled, roasted or eaten raw.

Don’t be afraid to experiment with healthy vegetable recipes, as they can do wonders for your health. Good luck & enjoy!

 

Healthy Benefits of Pets

February 21st, 2012

Anyone that has a pet knows how happy they can make you. After a long and tiring day it is always immensely rewarding to come home to a pet that is excited and grateful to see you. But did you know that there are also many health benefits of pet ownership? Studies repeatedly show that the health benefits of pets are tremendous and can help you achieve longevity as well as be more emotionally fulfilled.

Here are 5 healthy benefits of having pets:

Pets Can Reduce Stress Levels

Research continually shows that pets can have a therapeutic effect on their owners. One of the many health benefits of pets is that stress can be dramatically reduced thanks to your furry companion. The act of petting or holding a pet can have a significantly calming affect on their owner and can help ease away the stress and tensions of the day.

Pets Can Get You in Shape

Need an excuse or motivator to get you off the couch? Owning a dog should do the trick! The great benefits of having a dog is that you will need to walk your dog on a daily basis, which can do wonders for your health and fitness. The health benefits of dog walking are numerous. Walking your dog can help you lose weight and improve your cardiovascular health, as well as improving your endurance.

Pets Can Improve Your Social Life

Another health benefit of owning a dog or in fact any pet is that it can improve your social life as well as make you feel less lonely. Pet ownership will give you something in common with other pet owners and people are often more likely to stop and chat with strangers when they have a dog or other type of pet in tow. What’s more, even when you are alone in the house you will still have your pet for company.

Pets Can Reduce Your Blood Pressure

Studies have shown that owning a pet can lower your blood pressure as well as your cholesterol. This is likely due to the calming and relaxing effects of pet ownership and because, in general, pet owners are found to suffer less stress than non pet owners. Therefore, as well as the psychological benefits of pets there are also many physical benefits to pet ownership.

Pets Can Fight off Depression

Having a pet has also proven to help fight off the effects of depression. Often, caring for another living creature like a pet can help relieve the effects of depression.

There are clearly many health benefits of pet ownership and it seems that in many cases pets can help improve an individuals quality of  life in multiple ways. So whether you are studying to be a veterinary assistant and deal with animals throughout your day or enjoy the companionship of having a pet as you complete your online degree program, you are likely reaping the health benefits of having pets in your life. If you don’t yet have a pet but would like one, you may be able to enjoy many healthy benefits of having a pet, but also be aware that pets are a huge responsibility and shouldn’t be taken on without careful consideration.

5 Healthy Benefits of Online Education

February 2nd, 2012

Studying online has many advantages over studying at a regular brick and mortar school. The tuition rates at online schools are usually substantially lower and you also often get to make your own hours and timetable. What’s more, one of the benefits of studying online is that it can actually help your health, as you will have more spare time to concentrate on leading a healthy lifestyle.

Here are five healthy advantages of online education:

You Can Still Exercise Regularly

One of the main advantages of online classes is that most allow you to work at your own pace, which can free up a lot of time for exercise. When you are attending a regular brick and mortar school it can be very difficult to schedule in quality exercise time when you are having to attend classes throughout the day and commute to and fro school. As you don’t have to do either of these at an online school, you can exercise virtually whenever and as long as you want, making it much easier to maintain an active lifestyle.

You Can Still Maintain A Healthy Diet

Everyone’s heard of the “Freshmen 15″ but one of the pros of online education is that you can keep on top of your schedule without having to let yourself or your healthy diet go. The flexible nature of online degrees usually enables you to have plenty of time to cook and prepare your meals. No longer will you have to rely on drive thru meals or overpriced cafeteria food, as you will be able to both study and eat from the convenience of your home. The freedom of not having to eat on the go will allow you to cultivate a healthy eating plan.

You Can Still Get Enough Sleep

Many studies show that not getting enough sleep can lead to obesity, depression and a general lack of mental focus. However, one of the great advantages of online courses is that you won’t have to worry about staying up all night to finish that 10 page essay due the next day or cramming for an exam. As most online education programs allow you to make your own schedule, you can take exams and complete essays when they are convenient for you, as opposed to adhering to the strict deadlines often imposed at brick and mortar schools.

You Will Have More Time to Socialize

Students often fear that an online degree program will equal less socialization but this can actually prove to be quite the opposite. Although you won’t get to experience the thriving campus life that you would at a traditional school, many online students are able to do their studies in much less time than regular students and can enjoy this free time socializing. Studies repeatedly emphasize the health benefits of socializing regularly and one of the advantages of online degree studying is that you won’t have to loose your social life.

You Will Be Less Stressed

Doctors often emphasis how dangerous a stressful lifestyle can be on your health, but fortunately completing an online program doesn’t have to be a stressful ordeal. As most online degree programs don’t require you to commute, you won’t have to worry about renting extra accommodation or gas or public transportation fees. What’s more, online degrees usually have significantly lower tuition rates, so you also won’t have to worry about overwhelming student loans looming over you for decades to come. As an added bonus, many online degrees offer fully accredited online degree programs so you won’t have to stress over how your education reflects on your resume once you graduate.

Completing a college online degree can have surprising health benefits, and by no means has to restrict your healthy lifestyle in any way. The time an online degree will save you will likely allow you to dedicate much more time to leading an active and healthy lifestyle. Of course there are many pros and cons of online classes, but enrolling in an online degree program has many healthy benefits. So whether you are enrolled in an online masters degree program or completing your online nursing degree – you can still stay healthy!

 

How to Maximize Your Workout

January 13th, 2012

Working out is difficult but any avid gym bunny will assure you that the discipline and hard work involved is absolutely worth it! Working out allows you to gain a more toned and slimmer frame and also helps produce endorphins which can make you feel elevated and have more energy.

What’s more, studies constantly emphasize the importance of working out and how it can boost both your heart health and metabolism. However, it is very important that your workout regime is conducted properly in order to avoid injuries and to maximize your exercise results. In order to get the best workout you will want to do some research before you start and take the necessary steps to ensure a productive workout.

Here our top tips for experiencing the best workouts:

Use Exercise Equipment Correctly

Exercise equipment can seem pretty daunting at first glance. It can be tricky to figure out exactly how to use it and how to get the best work out out of them as well. If you are unsure of how to use certain work out machines don’t be afraid to ask the gym staff – that’s what they are paid to do! Also make sure you understand what muscle groups and type of exercise it is targeting (i.e. strength training or cardio) so that you know how to best plan and coordinate the rest of your workout effectively. You also might want to consider hiring a personal trainer, but make sure they have completed a valid personal trainer certification program.

Get Plenty of Protein

Protein helps prepare and build muscles, so it is an essential component for most exercise routines.You can get your protein my eating a high in protein meal or food before and after your workout or by using protein shakes or bars. These shakes and bars can be found at most health food stores and have the potential to really help you build up noticeable muscle tone fast.

Take it One Step at a Time

When you first start working out, you will want to build upon your work out schedule gradually. The last thing you want to do is overwhelm yourself or injure yourself, so start out slow and then gradually create a more intense and longer exercise work out. Making exercise a regular part of your day can take some slick scheduling. Look for gaps in your schedules, like taking a break between studying for your online bachelors degree, and go for a quick 15 minute run or doing some squats. Anything to get the blood pumping.

Try 30 minutes of cardio at first followed by some weight training, then add more time on to both sections of your work out as you go along.

Mix it Up

Once you have a regular workout schedule going, you will want to mix it up a little from time to time. Effective workouts usually involve plenty of variety, as your body quickly gets used to a regular routine so you need to make regular adjustments in order to fully challenge your body. Try different fitness crazes such as the kettlebell workout or simply try some different kind of weight machines or cardio work out.

Reward Yourself

The best workout plan should involve some rewards! If you are putting in plenty of hours in at the gym and are starting to see some hopeful and noticeable results – treat yourself! Obviously this shouldn’t involve gorging on your favorite junk food but it can mean doing something else that you enjoy and find fun. Set targets and goals for yourself that can act as motivators to help you achieve your health and fitness goals.

Entertain Yourself

You are unlikely to enjoy your work out or stay focused if you have nothing to entertain you while you work out. Listening to your iPod or the radio can be great motivators to continue pushing yourself that one step further in your fitness and exercise endeavors. For the best cardio workout you may even want to look for gyms that have individual televisions on their cardio equipment. This allows you to watch your favorite shows while you workout, making exercise far less torturous and perhaps even a little enjoyable! Another popular solution to beating workout boredom is to bring a book, class notes or a magazine to read while you work on the exercise bikes. This can make time seem like it is going by so much faster!

There are so many ways a tired exercise routine can be rebooted and improved so that you can start getting more out of your workout and also have more fun while you do it. Follow these work out tips and adapt them to your daily workout and both your mind and body will reap the benefits.

A Day in the Life of a Dental Assistant

January 4th, 2012

With our population ever increasing and people living longer and longer, careers in the field of healthcare services are becoming ever more in demand. The role of dental assistant is just one of the many in-demand jobs currently available, and projected to continue growing.

Many Americans are taking the initiative to enroll in dental assistant training now, before the big boom in demand hits as the baby boomer generation continues to age.

A dental assistant job can be an immensely rewarding and fulfilling career path. A registered dental assistant gets to work with and help others and a dental assistant salary can also be very competitive.

What is a Dental Assistant?

You may be asking yourself what is a dental assistant? A dental assistant is someone who assists dentists throughout their work day. Their workload is usually comprised of a combination of laboratory, office and patient care duties. Dental assistants job descriptions can vary from place to place, but it usually mainly consists of dividing their time between aiding patients and the dentists themselves.

Here’s a Look at a Dental Assistant’s Typical Day

A typical day as a dental assistant will usually begin with you arriving 30-45 minutes before the first patients show up at the office, so that you can prepare the office for their arrival. You will make sure that all files, x-rays, records, dentist equipment and charts are in order and ready for the dentist to use.  Then you will show your first patient into the dentists office and inform the dentist that his or her patient is ready to see them.

During a patient’s appointment, your dental assistant duties usually consist of rinsing the patients mouth, passing dentist tools to the dentist and assisting the dentist in any other procedures he or she may need help with. You will also take notes on the patient’s chart and, in-between appointments, you will be expected to clean and prepare the room for the next patient.

A day as a dentist assistant is always dynamic, can be hectic, and you will likely get little time to spare to sit down or take much of a break. However, many dental assistants say this is what they love about being a dental assistant- the work environment is always lively and the diversity of the patients and their needs makes it fun and keeps things fresh, rather than being boring!

Common Dental Assistant duties include:

  • Disinfecting and Sterilizing Dentist Instruments
  • Welcoming patients into the dentist’s office
  • Handing to the dentist instruments and other medical devices
  • Cleaning the dentists mouth often using suction hoses
  • Making impressions and casts of patients teeth
  • Taking X-rays
  • Organizing and scheduling patients appointments

How Do I Become a Dental Assistant?

If you are wondering how to become a dental assistant you will want to start with becoming a certified dental assistant. You can achieve this status by completing medical assistant associate degrees at junior or community colleges or at a career college. There aren’t many dental assistant online programs because much of the training requires hands-on activity, but there is lots of information online regarding where to go and find dental assistant schools.

You can usually become a dental assistant within one to two years depending on which type of school and dental assistant program you decide to enroll in. Some dental assistants choose not to attend school but instead learn on the job, but it can be harder to find your initial first job as a dental assistant this way and it also has the potential to decrease your chance of earning the same amounts as those that went to school.

How Much Do Dental Assistants Make?

Dental assistant salaries vary from state to state and level of education and qualifications can also affect the salary of  dental assistant. As a general rule, someone who has dental assistant certification will earn significantly more than someone who is simply learning on the job. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2010 the bottom 10% of dental assistants in America earn $22,680 where as the top 10% earn $47,090.

So if you love working with people and have an interest in dental care, becoming a certified dental assistant may be a great career choice for you!

How to Beat the Winter Blues

December 13th, 2011

As the winter months roll in, it can be hard to maintain a positive attitude and healthy lifestyle. Freezing weather, daylight savings and dangerous roads can all contribute to feeling moodier and less motivated during this time of year. In addition, several million Americans suffer from seasonal affective disorder or SAD due to the lack of sunlight during the winter.

Although it can be hard to get enthusiastic about the winter, there are multiple ways you can combat seasonal depression and have more energy during this more trying time of the year.

10 Suggestions for Beating the Winter Blues & Preventing Seasonal Affective Disorder

Lighten Up

Exposing yourself to bright lights can be an extremely effective solution to beating SAD symptoms. If you can take time off work, try and schedule a vacation in January or February. Once the holidays are over, seasonal depression symptoms can accelerate so taking a vacation somewhere more tropical during this time of year would be a wise idea that could help prevent the onset of SAD.

A thriftier option is to simply invest in seasonal affective disorder lights. These are special lights that emulate natural light waves emitted by the sun, helping to bring the same mood altering effects that you would get from a summer day. There are many affordable lights available online and most popular drugstores also stock them, so be sure to look into this easy SAD treatment if you’re starting to feel the effects of the disorder.

Get Some Exercise

When it’s freezing outside, the last thing you likely want to do is exercise. However, studies repeatedly show that exercising regularly can help treat SAD. Exercising regularly will not only allow you to look better, but also the endorphins released can help you to feel a lot happier. While there are many treatments for seasonal affective disorder, simple exercise is one of the easiest to complete.

If you aren’t into the gym and don’t like jogging, even taking a simple half hour walk everyday could be your ticket to brighter mental skies. You will be amazed at how effective light exercise can be at improving your mood and alleviating the symptoms of SAD.

Eat Healthily

It may be tempting to gorge on comfort food during the winter and especially the holidays, but eating healthily is a great method for seasonal affective disorder treatment. Of course, we all eat unhealthy dishes sometimes, but try and eat healthy the majority of the time to prevent any additional weight gain, which would be certain to compound the negative effects of SAD symptoms.

Try eating plenty of fruits and vegetables each day and re-hydrating by drinking at least five glasses of water. Make sure you always eat breakfast and avoid skipping on meals in general. If you don’t have time for regular meals, be sure to stock up on healthy snacks so that you aren’t reaching for candy bars and fast food when you find yourself in a pinch.

Socialize

Spending time with your friends and family is often a great way to help cheer you up, and it works the same way when attempting treatment for SAD. Feelings of loneliness and isolation can easily contribute to seasonal depression disorder, so be sure to get out as much as possible, even though it’s cold. Load up on warm winter attire and spend as little time in front of the TV as possible!

While you probably feel exhausted after a long day at work, try and do something social at least a couple of weekday evenings each and every week. Even if this just means having dinner with family members or going for happy hour with your coworkers, make that extra effort to get out and about a couple of times a week. You will feel better for it!

Take Vitamins

Taking daily vitamins can not only decrease your likelihood of catching typical winter illnesses such as sniffly colds and the flu, but it can also help improve to your mood. A key cause of seasonal affective disorder is a lack of vitamin D, which we naturally absorb from daylight produced by the sun.

The lack of daylight in the winter months can lead to vitamin D deficiency which causes cognitive impairment and even serious illnesses such as rickets and cancer. Vitamin D vitamins can be bought over the counter from most drugstores and are very affordable. Try taking one supplement a day and you may find your seasonal affective disorder symptoms decrease.

Drink Alcohol in Moderation

Some studies show that a glass of red wine a day can help combat depression but you should always try and drink in moderation. When you are feeling sad, it may be tempting to turn to the bottle. However, this will only temporarily relieve your symptoms of seasonal affective disorder and won’t solve any long term issues. In fact, studies show that it can make them even worse!

A nasty hangover is hardly the way to help you beat SAD symptoms either. Don’t be afraid to go out and enjoy a drink now and then, just remember to drink responsibly and avoid getting drunk on a regular basis. It’s tempting to lock ourselves up inside and rely on a warm dose of liquor during the cold months, but remember that there are far more effective ways for beating winter blues.

Take A Break

Even if you can’t get any time off work, do make sure to plan a weekend getaway. If you can’t afford to travel to somewhere warmer, then stay local, but definitely do something different. A change of scene can take your mind off the not so great weather and help you return to work more motivated to get things done.

Going somewhere new will not only be fun but will also help you feel re-energized.  Hotels and tourist destinations also often have great deals during the winter months, so keep your eyes peeled and you may be able to snag a bargain. Nothing helps stop SAD dead in its tracks like landing a great hotel package at 50% off!

Get Your 8 Hours

Sleep can be heavily tied into winter depression symptoms. Too much sleep (more than 12 hours a day) can actually make you feel moodier and more lethargic, while not getting enough sleep can increase feelings of depression. Try and get between 8-10 hours of sleep every night and take short naps during the day if you can.

It may seem difficult to get enough sleep during the week and not oversleep during the weekend, but if you make maintaining a healthy sleep pattern a priority you should be able to stick to it. Remember to always set your alarm to allow for a good night’s sleep and avoid drinking caffeine or eating sugary foods before sleep.

Think Positive

Thinking positively is far easier said than done, but it really can help people get through all different types of depression and its one of the most effective ways to beat the winter blues. Keeping a positive attitude and seeing the humor in things can allow you to feel happier and more enthusiastic about what lies ahead.

Of all the seasonal affective disorder treatments, thinking positively is the cheapest and quickest way to turn your frown upside down! Try and adjust your thought process to be more positive gradually and you will be amazed at how much happier you will begin to feel. SAD affects both the mind and body, so improving your mind is a great way to help beat winter blues symptoms.

Seek Help

If you have tried all of the winter blues tips above and it doesn’t seem like things are getting any better, you will want to strongly consider seeking professional help. Talk to your doctor or start seeing a therapist, and they should be able to effectively help you beat SAD.

As you can see, beating the winter blues is definitely possible. There are many methods that can help you feel happier and more energetic during the winter time, so pick a few to start with and get going today! Remember to keep a positive outlook, be prepared to try new remedies and don’t be afraid to seek the help of a professional. Good luck out there.

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