What it Means to ‘Visit My Dentist’ vs. ‘Visit My Dental Hygienist’

In: General Dentistry Comments: 0

As part of your oral health team, you’ll find there are different kinds of professionals and services that help make sure you receive comprehensive, high-quality care. While all offer extensive experience and qualifications, you may have wondered, “What’s the difference between my dentist and dental hygienist?” These are important and distinct roles to ensure you receive the best care!

A Visit to My Dentist Means:

colorado_mission_of_mercy_boulder_dental_dr_murphy_julie_brownYour dentist leads your oral health team and will oversee your dental care process. With extensive qualifications and a medical background, your dentist will provide thorough examinations, interpret your X-rays, make diagnoses, carry out any needed restorative or surgical treatments, manage local anesthetics, and prescribe medications, if needed.

If you are found to have cavities, your dentist will perform the fillings and any other complex procedures, such as a crown preparation. You may find some dentists will also provide the deep cleaning and scaling process. In many cases, the dental hygienist will be present during the dentist check-up, taking notes and assisting.

At North Boulder Dental Group you can expect your dentist also to be a wealth of information and advice. If you are experiencing discomfort, unsure of your oral health care options, or considering a cosmetic dental treatment, ask your dentist!

A Visit to My Dental Hygienist Means:

donated_dental_services_north_boulder_dental_dr_murphy_sica_brown_weldenYou will find that your dental hygienist has gone through extensive training and specializes in helping to maintain your good oral health and prevent disease. The hygienist will review your medical history and log any changes to your health or medications. Your hygienist will chart your dental condition or the current state of your teeth and gums, often as the dentist is performing your check-up. They will administer X-rays and typically provide a thorough cleaning of your teeth and gums.

Because the primary goal is to prevent disease, the dental hygienist will often be the professional that applies dental sealants and administers fluoride treatments. If you are getting a specialized treatment, such as a mouthguard or retainer, the hygienist will make an impression of your teeth for the custom-made guard.

The dental hygienist is available to guide you, and your family, about proper nutrition and ways to make at-home oral health care easier and more effective. They can aid in providing cosmetic treatments, such as whitening.

At North Boulder Dental Group, our dentists and dental hygienists work together to ensure you receive safe, first-class services! While the roles of these two professionals are different, their goals are the same: to partner with patients and the community to achieve optimum oral health!

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