Original Article

A qualitative study on experiences of job satisfaction and meaning of work among clinical dental hygienists

Ji-Hyeon Park   Soon-Ryun Lim*   

1Department of Dental Hygiene, Graduate School of Namseoul University
2Department of Dental Hygiene, Namseoul University


Objectives: This study explored job satisfaction experience and meaning of work in dental hygienists. Methods: In-depth interviews were conducted with 13 clinical dental hygienists who had been working in dental clinics for more than 10 years. The analysis method used was developed by Giorgi, including all four steps. Results: The results of the interview were categorized into five central meanings: recognition and trust (including patient’s trust, trust in the boss, recognition in the hospital, and intimacy), growth (growth of the hospital, growth in jobs, and problem-solving skills), professional pride (self-esteem, extension of work and changes of awareness, and being able to help others), reward (financial compensation and psychological rewards), and meaning of life given by work (the process of maturing, self-representation, and vitality of life). Conclusions: Based on this study, we need to develop tools to measure dental hygienists’ level of job satisfaction as well as follow-up research on ways to improve it.

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