A dental hygienist generally studies for 3 years at university obtaining either a Bachelor of Oral Health or Bachelor of Health Science in Oral Health. There are also other overseas equivalent qualifications, however these need to be recognized by the Dental Council of New Zealand.
A registered dental hygienist is a licensed dental professional who specialises in preventive oral health, focusing on oral hygiene techniques. Dental hygienists provide three types of services to their patients:
preventive services to promote and maintain good oral health.
educational services to help patients understand how to achieve excellent oral health.
therapeutic services which are treatments meant to stop disease and maintain healthy tissues in the mouth.
Most often hygienists work for a dentist, and some are qualified 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 x-rays, dental sealants, administration of fluoride, teeth whitening and providing instructions for proper oral hygiene and care.
The cost of a visit to a dental hygienist depends on the the hygienist’s experience and the duration of your treatment. A 1 hour appointment with a dental hygienist can range from $100 – $250.
To find a Dentist and Dental Hygienist near you visit www.fillinggaps.co.nz