Meet Your Oral Hygienist: Skills, Training, and Expertise

Meet Your Oral Hygienist

A Plymouth dentist and their team of oral hygienists understand the importance of oral health for your overall well-being. Having a clean and healthy oral cavity free from bacteria and plaque has a positive impact on your overall systemic health as well. Oral care should often begin at home through regular brushing, flossing, a healthy diet, and good hydration. But is this sufficient? Modern-era lifestyle and social trends like smoking and unhealthy eating habits can negatively impact your oral health. 

Let’s find out more about dental hygienists and how they can contribute to improved oral health. 

Oral Hygiene Tips from a Routine Dental Exam - White Flint Family Dental Rockville Maryland

Understanding the role of an oral hygienist

A dental, or oral hygienist is a healthcare professional specializing in teeth cleanings, oral hygiene counseling, and preventive dental care procedures. They work alongside your dentist to maintain the health of your teeth and gums, ultimately enhancing your long-term oral health.

Dental hygienists perform an array of treatments, which include the following:

Dental history review

  • Your oral hygienist records your dental and overall health history. This helps your dentist understand your past dental experiences and goals for the future. 

Oral hygiene counseling

  • Your hygienists can guide you to follow proper oral hygiene habits for the welfare of your oral health.
  • They teach you the correct brushing and flossing techniques.

Dental cleanings 

  • A dental hygienist uses special instruments to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth surfaces. 
  • They will additionally polish your teeth and make them less vulnerable to plaque adhesion. 

Deep scaling and root planing 

  • This procedure involves plays and tartar removal from beneath the surfaces of your gums where a regular brush cannot reach.
  • The roots are smoothed to prevent plaque and tartar from reattaching. 

Dental X-Rays

  • Hygienists are also trained to take dental X-rays to help your dentist view your teeth, bones, sinus, etc., to diagnose oral problems. 

Application of dental sealants

  • This is an effective preventive treatment offered by hygienists to seal deep pits and grooves of your back teeth to prevent plaque and bacterial accumulation. 
  • This can greatly reduce your risk of tooth decay.

Fluoride treatment

  • Topical fluorides applied by hygienists can greatly reduce the risk of cavities, especially in children.

Oral health screenings

  • Dental hygienists perform routine oral health screenings to check for cavities, gum disease, and signs of oral cancer and report the findings to your dentist. 

Dental, or oral hygienists play a crucial role in keeping your teeth and gums healthy. They enhance your oral health by providing treatments that go beyond regular brushing and flossing at home.