Brushing your teeth twice a day along with a regular visit to a dental hygienist will keep your teeth in a tip top condition.They are licensed oral dental professionals and usually work in tandem with a dentist. Providing essential preventive care, they make it possible for the dentist to focus on complex and specialized treatments. They specialize in prevention as opposed to treatment by a dentist.
Why do you need them?
Recent research showed that poor dental health could lead to other systemic diseases such as diabetes, heart diseases, and stroke. The mouth can be one of the primary sources of permanent release of bacteria into the bloodstream for various health problems. Here comes the role of a hygienist who will try to prevent the progress of dental diseases.
Services performed these professionals
The role of a dental hygienist had changed over a period. When the profession was developed in 1906, the purpose of the profession was to provide preventive dental cleaning services. Now the main objective of these professionals is to provide dental care, but more responsibilities have been added.
1. Oral assessments including administering prophylaxis (tooth cleaning), oral cancer screening, evaluating the condition of gums and mouth, dental charting, etc.
2. Taking, producing and interpreting dental X-ays
3. Removal of tartar and stains from teeth
4. The application of preventive medications like fluorides sealants to the teeth.
5. Office management and documentation duties
6. Taking tooth impressions to determine treatment need
7. Application of local anesthetic if properly trained
8. Teach patients about basic oral hygiene to prevent gum diseases and tooth decay as well as protection strategies. This includes introduction or maintenance of quit smoking program and knowledge sharing around good nutrition for healthy gum and teeth.
9. Performing non-surgical therapy like root planting, scaling.
10. Point to be noted that every state has its own licensing agreement for what a dentist can practice. Hence types of services performed by them vary from state to state.
The role of a Dental Hygienist
They must be good at working with hands as they primarily work in small part or tight quarters of the body using precise tools.
They should be comfortable standing or bending over patients for a long time
Should be well versed with complicated and complex machinery such as X-Ray machines and other powered instruments.
So next time, you visit a dentist or a hygienist, take the time to appreciate and listen to their instruction for you have only one set of natural teeth, and you would want to keep them as long as you can.