Dental hygienists are below average when it comes to happiness.

At CareerExplorer, we conduct an ongoing survey with millions of people and ask them how satisfied they are with their careers. As it turns out, dental hygienists rate their career happiness 3.1 out of 5 stars which puts them in the bottom 39% of careers.

To put this into perspective, we compared how happy dental hygienists are to similar careers in the industry. Take a look at the results below:

Salaries and satisfaction ratings in similar careers

Career Satisfaction Avg Salary
Family practitioner
3.1
$201k
Nurse practitioner
3.1
$121k
MRI technologist
3.1
$77k
Chiropractor
3.1
$75k
Prosthodontist
3.1
$101k
Dental hygienist
3.1
$75k
Dentist
3.0
$160k
Physician assistant
3.0
$122k
Health services manager
3.0
$101k

So what does it mean to be happy in your career? Let’s break it down into different dimensions:

  • Salary: Are dental hygienists happy with their salary?
  • Meaning: Do dental hygienists find their jobs meaningful?
  • Personality fit: How well suited are people’s personalities to their everyday tasks as dental hygienists?
  • Work environment: How enjoyable are dental hygienist’s work environments?
  • Skills utilization: Are dental hygienists making the best use of their abilities?

Are dental hygienists happy with their salary?

Dental hygienists rated their satisfaction with their salaries 3.6/5. The majority of dental hygienists are quite happy with their salaries, with very few having complaints about their income level.

We asked dental hygienists how fairly compensated they are for their work.
Their response was:

3.6 out of 5 stars

306 dental hygienists

5 Star
22%

22% of dental hygienists rated their compensation 5 stars

4 Star
35%

35% of dental hygienists rated their compensation 4 stars

3 Star
30%

30% of dental hygienists rated their compensation 3 stars

2 Star
8%

8% of dental hygienists rated their compensation 2 stars

1 Star
4%

4% of dental hygienists rated their compensation 1 stars

Do dental hygienists find their jobs meaningful?

On average, dental hygienists rate the meaningfulness of their work a 3.1/5. Most tend to be satisified with the level of meaning they find in their careers.

We asked dental hygienists how meaningful they found their work.
Their response was:

3.1 out of 5 stars

308 dental hygienists

5 Star
19%

19% of dental hygienists rated how meaningful they found their career 5 stars

4 Star
24%

24% of dental hygienists rated how meaningful they found their career 4 stars

3 Star
22%

22% of dental hygienists rated how meaningful they found their career 3 stars

2 Star
20%

20% of dental hygienists rated how meaningful they found their career 2 stars

1 Star
15%

15% of dental hygienists rated how meaningful they found their career 1 stars

How well are people’s personalities suited to everyday tasks as dental hygienists?

Dental hygienists rated their personality fit with their work an average of 4.1/5. The majority of dental hygienists find their personalities quite well suited to their work, with relatively few having complaints about their fit.

We asked dental hygienists how well their personalities fit into their careers.
Their response was:

4.1 out of 5 stars

329 dental hygienists

5 Star
47%

47% of dental hygienists rated their career fit 5 stars

4 Star
28%

28% of dental hygienists rated their career fit 4 stars

3 Star
14%

14% of dental hygienists rated their career fit 3 stars

2 Star
6%

6% of dental hygienists rated their career fit 2 stars

1 Star
5%

5% of dental hygienists rated their career fit 1 stars

How enjoyable is a dental hygienist’s work environment?

As a whole, dental hygienists rated their enjoyment of their work environment 3.7/5. A solid majority of dental hygienists enjoy their work environment, probably contributing to overall higher satisfaction with working as a dental hygienist.

We asked dental hygienists how much they enjoyed their work environment.
Their response was:

3.7 out of 5 stars

330 dental hygienists

5 Star
29%

29% of dental hygienists rated their work environment 5 stars

4 Star
33%

33% of dental hygienists rated their work environment 4 stars

3 Star
21%

21% of dental hygienists rated their work environment 3 stars

2 Star
12%

12% of dental hygienists rated their work environment 2 stars

1 Star
6%

6% of dental hygienists rated their work environment 1 stars

Are dental hygienists making the best use of their abilities?

Former dental hygienists on CareerExplorer have rated their skills utilization 3.4/5. Most dental hygienists surveyed find that they manage to use their abilities to their fullest as a dental hygienist, which helps contribute to higher career satisfaction in the long term.

We asked dental hygienists how well their abilities were used in their careers.
Their response was:

3.4 out of 5 stars

332 dental hygienists

5 Star
29%

29% of dental hygienists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 5 stars

4 Star
23%

23% of dental hygienists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 4 stars

3 Star
20%

20% of dental hygienists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 3 stars

2 Star
17%

17% of dental hygienists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 2 stars

1 Star
11%

11% of dental hygienists rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 1 stars