What Is The Hygienists
Role In The Practice?
The hygienist's main role is to provide
professional cleaning of the teeth for the patient.
This is usually called scaling and polishing.
However, perhaps their most important role is
the education of the patient in the best way
to keep the teeth free of plaque. Our hygienist's
work closely with the dentist's and Nurses to
provide care tailored to your needs.
Why Is This Treatment
Regular professional cleaning combined
with your home careW will help maintain a healthy
mouth. A clean and healthy mouth will improve
your appearance, help you keep your teeth and
give you fresh breath. Poor gum health is now
known to be related to heart problems later
Can A Hygienist Help Prevent
The training of the hygienist is centred
around preventing dental disease (Gum disease
and tooth decay). Carefully removing the deposits
that build up on the teeth (tartar) and teaching
you how to prevent it reforming again, will
go a long way to slowing the progress of gum
disease. By discussing your diet and recommending
other preventive measure your decay rate can
also be reduced. Remember prevention is free
- you do it yourself!
What Help Is Available
Children can benefit from having their
teeth polished and being shown how to brush
correctly. Techniques learned as a child will
be used throughout life. The hygienist can also
apply fluoride gels and solutions to help prevent
decay. The permanent back teeth can also benefit
from having the fissures sealed. This is done
by applying a special plastic coating to the
biting surface soon after they erupt into the
What Other Help Is Available
Adults can also benefit from preventive
measures such as the application of fluoride.
They can also have anti-bacterial gels and solutions
applied under the gum to kill the bacteria causing
gum disease. Another very important part of
the hygienists work, is the regular instruction
and advice on home care. The hygienist may also
suggest giving up smoking as this will reduce
staining. Recent research has also shown that
smokers have more gum disease and lose more
teeth than non-smokers. As with children, Adults
can also benefit from the application of sealants
to the deep fissures of the teeth. This will
prevent decay starting in these areas.
Why Doesn't The Dentist
Do This Work?
Some dentists will carry out this type of work.
However, many now recognise that the hygienist
has been specially trained to carry out scaling
and polishing and can spend longer with you.
They and our Nurses are also expert at teaching
you how to look after your teeth and gums. Often
the hygienist will spend a number of appointments
getting the gums healthy ready for the dentist
to restore the teeth with crowns and fillings.?
Will The Treatment Hurt?
Scaling and polishing is usually pain-free.
However, if you do experience some discomfort
the hygienist can eliminate this with the use
of topical anaesthetic creams or by giving you
some local anaesthetic. It is important that
you let the hygienist know at the time so that
some pain control can be given.
Is The Treatment
The cost will be discussed before
any treatment begins, a written quotation will
be given and any questions you may have will
be answered. We have a current price list displayed
in the waiting area giving a guide to the prices
charged for the service.
What Can I Do To Help
You can do a great deal to help yourself
and the hygienist as you are in control of your
mouth between visits to the practice. You will
be shown you how to remove plaque with a toothbrush
and fluoride toothpaste. You will also be shown
how to clean between your teeth with floss,
tape or little brushes. There are many products
available and we will recommend those that are
appropriate for you.
Reducing the amount of sugar
in your diet, and the number of times that you
eat during the day can help reduce decay. One
of our hygienists can give help you by looking
at your decay problem, your diet and by making
some recommendations for you to consider.