A dental hygienist is a licensed dental professional who specializes in preventive oral health, typically focusing on techniques in oral hygiene. Local dental regulations determine the scope of practice of dental hygienists. In most jurisdictions, hygienists work for a dentist, and some are licensed to administer local anesthesia. Common procedures performed by hygienists include cleanings known as prophylaxis, scaling and root planing for patients with periodontal disease, taking of prescribed radiographs, dental sealants, administration of fluoride, and providing instructions for proper oral hygiene and care.

The dental hygiene process of care has five steps:

  1. Assessing the patient: This includes, but is not limited to, a full review of the patient’s medical history, necessary X-rays to be taken, a clinical exam, and a periodontal assessment by probing areas of the patient’s mouth. A dental hygienist must have great finger dexterity.
  2. Dental hygiene diagnosis: Assessing of data pertaining to a client’s condition in terms that will help identify problems so as to lead to a creation of an order to apply available professional therapies. The diagnosis of disease in most jurisdictions may only be performed by the doctor.
  3. Planning: Creating a sequential treatment plan for the patient. The treatment plan will vary based on the patient’s immediate needs.
  4. Implementation: Carrying out the plan.
  5. Evaluation: Determining the effectiveness of the work that was performed.

To learn how our team at Goose Creek Family Dentistry can help you improve your dental hygiene in Goose Creek, South Carolina, call 843-764-3081 today. We will gladly answer any questions you have and help you arrange an appointment with our dentists, Dr. Gilreath and associates.