Objectives: This study aimed to investigate factors for retention intention among long-term employed dental hygienists and to provide basic data for improving the long-term service (working) environment. Methods: A total of 202 dental hygienists with more than five years’ work experience at dental hospitals and clinics located in Seoul, Gwangju, and Jeonnam Province, South Korea, were surveyed. The data were analyzed for each factor using exploratory factor analysis, and differences according to the general characteristics of the participants were analyzed using an independent sample t-test, one-way ANOVA and a hierarchical multiple regression analysis.
Results: At the current workplace, a better working environment, and higher job satisfaction were associated with higher retention intention. However, lower professionalism in dental hygiene as a subdomain of the professional self-concept domain was associated with higher retention intention.
Conclusions: To increase retention intention among dental hygienists, it is necessary to improve the working environment in which dental hygienists can perform professional roles and seek ways to establish their identity as professionals in dental healthcare settings.