What is a Hygienist?

February 7, 2018 6:50 am


What is a Hygienist?


Hygienists are a part of the dental team. They have an important role in helping you to look after your teeth. Hygienists are widely known for cleaning teeth.  They also provide advice to patients on how to maintain their oral hygiene and instruct a more efficient cleaning regime for you at home.

Cleaning your teeth is important to maintain good oral hygiene. Even with thorough home brushing and flossing, plaque and tartar can still build up in hard to reach areas.

“Did you know there are 5 surfaces on every tooth you need to clean?”

What does the Hygienist do?


The Hygienist professionally cleans the teeth by what’s known as a scale and polish. Seeing the hygienist for a clean will remove plaque and tartar from the tooth surface as well as below the gum line. This will help prevent gum disease, tooth loss and dental decay. Staining can also be removed from the teeth which may improve the brightness of your smile.

Hygienist also teach patients to use special cleaning aids such as interdental brushes to help prevent build up in those hard to reach areas. They give advice on which toothbrush and toothpaste a patient should and shouldn’t use as well. They will be sure to let you know the areas you are missing whilst brushing.

Advice from the hygienist can be dietary, home maintenance and suggestions into giving up smoking.

Do I need to see a dentist first?


Patients used to only be able to see the hygienist on the prescription of a dentist, which meant that patients had to see the dentist before being treated by any other member of the dental team. The General Dental Council has now removed this barrier, making it easier for patients to see the hygienist by what is known as Direct Access. This enables a patient to see the hygienist without the prescription of a dentist.

Does it hurt?


Scale and polish treatments are normally pain free, but if you do feel any discomfort the hygienist can use local anaesthetic or anaesthetic gel to make it more comfortable.


To find out more and to ask further questions please contact the surgery and we will be happy to help and advise you.

Contact Details: Please Call 01708 446447 or Email the surgery at hello@vivadentalstudio.co.uk