Dental Hygiene Exams

Dental Hygiene Exam

The following is a brief description of the ADEX Dental Hygiene Examination. For more extensive information please download the Dental Hygiene Candidate Manual.

The Examination in Dental Hygiene consists of two core Examinations and each takes place at different times. The Computer Simulated Clinical Examination (CSCE) is a computer based examination, approximately 2 hours in length, and takes place on one day by appointment at a Prometric Testing Center. The Patient Treatment Clinical Examination (PTCE) is approximately 4 hours in length, scheduled at a clinical examination site. Both parts of the ADEX Dental Hygiene Examination (clinical or computer-based) must be successfully completed within 18 months. If any examination in the series is not successfully completed within the 18 months, all examinations of the series must be retaken. A score of 75 or more is required to pass each Examination. Both Examinations must be passed to receive CDCA Status. CDCA Status is recognized by the participating CDCA licensing jurisdictions.

Local Anesthesia Examination for Dental Hygienists

The CDCA Local Anesthesia Examination is not part of the ADEX exam. It is an optional examination offered to any eligible Dental Hygiene professional that wishes to take the exam as part of the certification process to administer local anesthesia. It is the responsibility of each candidate to check with their state dental board to determine if they meet all the qualifications for this certification process. Applicants must provide proof that they have graduated or are in their senior or final year at an accredited Dental Hygiene Program in the U.S. or Canada. Those individuals who are still in school must provide documentation from the school that they are expected to complete all academic requirements and graduate.

Note: This credential typically comes into effect on graduation from school, so the candidate should check with their state dental board to determine how long before graduation the board will accept this examination.

The Local Anesthesia Examination for Dental Hygienists consists of a 50 question multiple-choice computer based examination administered at a Prometric Testing Center. Disciplines and subject matter addressed in this examination include:

  1. Anatomy and neurophysiology
  2. Pharmacology of anesthetic agents and vasoconstrictors
  3. Local anesthetic techniques
  4. Topical anesthetics
  5. Infection control
  6. Prevention, recognition and management of complications

A score of 75% or better is required to pass.

Nitrous Oxide Examination for Dental Hygienists

The CDCA Nitrous Oxide is not part of the ADEX exam. It is an optional examination offered to any eligible Dental Hygiene professional that wishes to take the exam as part of the certification process to monitor Nitrous Oxide administration. It is the responsibility of each candidate to check with their state dental board to determine if they meet all the qualifications for this certification process. Applicants must provide proof that they have graduated or in their senior or final year at an accredited Dental Hygiene Program in the U.S. or Canada. Those individuals who are still in school must provide documentation from the school that they are expected to complete all academic requirements and graduate.

Note: This credential typically comes into effect on graduation from school, so the candidate should check with their state dental board to determine how long before graduation the board will accept this examination.

The Nitrous Oxide Examination for Dental Hygienists is a 50 question multiple-choice computer based examination administered at a Prometric Testing Center. Disciplines and subject matter addressed in this examination include:

  1. Concepts and management of pain and anxiety
  2. Anatomy and physiology of respiration
  3. Pharmacology of Nitrous Oxide
  4. Medical assessment of the patient prior to using nitrous oxide
  5. Administration of nitrous oxide
  6. Management of complications and medical emergencies
  7. Postoperative care of the patient

A score of 75% or better is required to pass.