Dental hygienist facts: All you need to know

dental hygienist facts

When you visit dental clinics or offices, have you ever wondered what is the difference between a dentist and a dental hygienist? They perform almost the same procedures, wear the same clothes, and speak to patients like both knowledgeable people in their field. Let us find out dental hygienist facts that we have yet to know and discover about how it really is to work as an oral hygienist.

4 Dental hygienist facts

  • Dental hygienists are licensed dental practitioners.

Yes! They are not just dental assistants! They are licensed, like your trusted dentists, to work and care for your teeth. For them to practice their profession, they have to finish a dental hygiene education program and pass necessary local and state exams. These tests are both theoretical and clinical in nature so they can be tested if their knowledge and skills are enough to fully perform their duties.

  • Dental hygienists perform more than just oral prophylaxis

Do you think that removing plaque and tartar are the only things dental hygienists are good at? Well, you may be surprised about the scope of their responsibilities. They perform oral assessments to patients and gather necessary information to get reliable patient dental history. They also facilitate taking your x-rays and are able to interpret them for you. In some countries, dental hygienists are allowed to administer anesthesia. That is just a few of the things that they can do for you in a clinical setting. Because of their professions wide scope of responsibilities, there may be more than what you think they can do just to ensure that prevention and treatment of oral diseases are upheld.

dental hygienist facts
  • Dental hygienists work outside a clinic

Aside from working hand-in-hand with dentists in a clinic or dental office, dental hygienists can also work in hospitals, schools, universities, prison facilities, nursing homes, communities, or other establishments where they can do counseling and other educational programs to promote healthy dental hygiene. Some dental hygienists have excellent knowledge about their line of work that they become authors, public speakers, clinical instructors, and professors. This just shows that these dental professionals are not tied down in dental clinics and offices alone. They can reach as many people as they can through all the platforms and access that they can get.

  • Dental hygiene employment is projected to increase

Because a lot of people are knowledgeable now of what responsibilities and ‘power’ a dental hygienist have, there are now so many aspirants who would want to become dental hygienists. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, it can be expected that the employment of dental hygienists in the clinic setting alone can increase to up to 20% until 2026. Not only does this mean that being dental hygienists are becoming more and more popular, it also means that people are somehow becoming aware of how important it is for us to care for our dental health.

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