A dental hygienist works closely with the dentist. While they have a good amount of interaction with patients, they also do a lot of work behind the scenes. They play an important role in the dental environment and perform a wide range of job related responsibilities. You can learn about some of those responsibilities by reading this article.
How a dental hygienist works with patients
The dental hygienist will welcome, seat, and drape the patient to prepare them for treatment. They will ask the patient about any concerns they may have and work to ensure that the patient is comfortable and well-informed of what to expect.
The dental hygienist will also clean the patient's teeth to remove built-up plaque and deposits from the surfaces of their teeth. The dental hygienist is also the one responsible for applying fluoride on the patient's teeth to help prevent the development of cavities.
They will examine the patient's teeth to look for signs of serious conditions. The dental hygienist will also keep a current CPR certification to ensure they will be able to assist the dentist in the occurrence of an emergency. They are also trained on how to work the oxygen supply and on emergency drug administration.
Patients will also be educated on proper oral hygiene, treatment of their conditions, and warning signs by the dental hygienist. The hygienist will be the one to give patients their care plans after they have had a procedure and to make sure the patients fully understand the instructions.
What a dental hygienist does behind the scenes
There is a lot the hygienist does behind the scenes to assist the dentist with the running of the office as well as with patient care.
The hygienist will get the room set up and cleaned for the next patient. They will also make sure the proper instruments are available and make sure the room is fully stocked with everything the dentist may need. They will clean, sanitize, and sharpen the dentist's instruments as well.
They will take care of the charting by making sure to record the patient's vitals and chart their history, condition, and treatment.
The dental hygienist is also the one responsible for taking care of the inventory in the office and placing orders.
While a dental hygienist has a lot of responsibilities, they also have the privilege of knowing they are a vital part of the smooth running of the dentist office.