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Unsung Heroes: A Day in the Life of Your Dental Hygienist

August 25, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — crovatto @ 8:02 pm
A dental hygienist getting ready for the day

Not all heroes wear capes, some of them wear scrubs! Have you ever wondered what goes on in the daily life of your dental hygienist? They do far more than just cleaning teeth. Their role in your oral health and the daily operations of your dentist’s office are crucial, yet often overlooked.

Continue reading to explore the unsung heroes of dentistry and gain insight into the dedicated professionals who help you maintain your spectacular smile.

The Morning Routine

When your dental hygienist arrives at the office, their first order of business is reviewing records of the patients they have scheduled for the day. They’ll look for information like when their last checkup was, if they’ve had any emergency treatment performed, and any health issues the dentists should know about.

It’s a hygienist’s job to ensure that the research has been done for each patient to create a quality visit every time.

Next, your hygienist will meet with the rest of the staff to ensure smooth operations for the day and then get to work setting up each treatment room by serializing instruments and disinfecting all surfaces. This is all before the first patient of the day!

The Busy Appointment

Once patients begin to arrive, your dental hygienist will have their hands full with screenings and cleanings. A good dental hygienist will go over your dental history with you, looking for information that stands out such as past treatments or complications.

After a short conversation, the time for a thorough cleaning has come. Your hygienist will remove any plaque or tartar from your teeth with special instruments before a thorough flossing and rinsing.

They may also perform other treatments such as applying fluoride or taking X-rays of your teeth for your dentist to go over later. Your hygienist will end each appointment by discussing their findings with you and making suggestions for at-home oral care.

It’s a hygienist’s job to make sure that you know what your dentist is saying to you and that you understand expectations going forward. Your hygienist wants to see you succeed, so they’ll give you all the tools you need to do so!

The End of the Day

At the end of the day, after the last patient has gone home, there is still work to be done! The hygienist uses the quiet time after patients to complete progress notes, ensuring that observations are taken down before they’re forgotten.

They also prepare used instruments for sterilization, running them in the autoclave overnight, ensuring they’re ready for the next day’s patients. Your hygienist then thoroughly empties water containers, water lines, and suction traps to prevent mold and bacterial growth.

Finally, after all that is done, your hygienist powers down and locks up all equipment and heads home for the evening. Their job isn’t easy, but you won’t hear them say they’d rather be doing anything else.

About the Practice

Dr. Steven Crovatto and Dr. Megan Edwards, the skilled dentists at Crovatto & Edwards Family Dentistry, bring decades of experience to their Orange Park practice. Both are graduates of the University of Florida and share a commitment to patient care. They provide advanced dental services in a welcoming atmosphere, prioritizing patient comfort and well-being. To schedule an appointment, visit the website or call (904) 272-0800 for more information.

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