Our Dental Hygienists are the prevention specialists who are professionally trained to work within the Dental team. Their role is the prevention and treatment of gum disease which is the most common form of tooth loss. They play an important part in showing our patients how best to care for their oral health at home. They are registered with the Dental Council.
What treatments are provided by the Dental Hygienists?
Scaling and polishing of teeth – This removes harmful bacteria (plaque), calculus/tartar (calcified bacteria) and stains from the teeth. Deeper scaling (root planing) which includes cleaning the roots of teeth may be required for some patients. Where patients have a problem with sensitivity local anaesthetic can be used.
Diet Advice – Our dental hygienists can provide practical advice on how diet and nutrition affects your mouth. This can help you prevent dental decay, erosion (tooth wear) from acidic foods and drinks and also reduce some types of sensitivity.
Oral Hygiene Advice – This is perhaps the most important role as it helps teach you how to keep your mouth healthy through correct brushing and cleaning in between your teeth with floss or interdental brushes. Our hygienists can also provide practical advice on how foods, drinks and lifestyle can affect your teeth.
Fissure Sealants – These are thin protective coatings placed on the biting surface of back teeth. They help prevent decay and are commonly placed on children’s teeth or any adult who is at high risk of developing decay.
Smoking Cessation – Our dental hygienists can advise you how best to quit smoking. Research shows that smokers have significantly higher rates of gum disease than non-smokers.
Halitosis (Bad Breath) – One of the most common causes of bad breath is gum disease and tooth decay. Our dental hygienists can discuss the possible causes and treatment options available to you.
Review Radiographs (X–Rays) – Radiographs can be reviewed by our hygienists to assess the levels of bone supporting your teeth.
Sensitivity – Our dental hygienists can advise you on a range of desensitising products available to help relieve sensitivity and can apply appropriate medicaments as required.
Why should I visit the Dental Hygienist?
Regular cleaning and in some cases deeper scaling (cleaning under the gum) helps prevent tooth decay, inflammation of the gums (gingivitis) and bone loss (periodontal disease). Having a clean mouth will help keep your teeth, improve appearance and give you fresher breath. After your visit, teeth will feel cleaner and may appear whiter. A key factor in keeping your mouth healthy is regular attendance. Patients who attend regularly tend to need the least amount of work carried out due to the fact that the mouth remains in a healthy state and problems are picked up early. To get the most from your Dental Hygiene visits, always follow the advice and instructions given by your dental professional.
Gum disease can have a significant effect on your general health. Research is showing a relationship between gum disease, heart disease and several other degenerative disorders.
Do I need to see the dentist before seeing the Hygienist?
Under Dental Council regulations, dental work carried out by a dental hygienist may only be carried out following a referral from dentist who has first examined the patient and who has indicated to the dental hygienist the course of treatment to be provided. If you are new to our practice you would either need a letter of referral from your existing dentist or you would need to attend one of our own dentists for an initial assessment and referral which would be free if you are covered for an examination either under your medical card or your PPS number.
If you have a dentist but would like to book an appointment please download the form below, ask your dentist to fill it in and return to us.