Dental Hygienist

Dental hygienists work under the supervision of a licensed dentist. They provide dental hygiene, as well as treatment and information related to the prevention of diseases and disorders of the teeth and mouth. They teach patients about how to maintain good oral health, and may also perform activities such as exposing x-ray, making dental impressions, applying fluoride and sealant, scaling and polishing tooth surfaces.

A dental hygienist generally provides public health care within communities but they might also work in hospitals,clinics, research institutions, government agencies, educational facilities and private industry. Dental hygienists working in community health may visit schools and community groups for inspections and educational presentations. They often have to transport portable equipment that may weigh more than 10 kilograms.

Expanded dental insurance coverage, an increased emphasis on and awareness of preventative dental maintenance, and people keeping their natural teeth longer are all factors positively influencing the demand for dental hygienists.

Skills Required

  • a caring, responsible attitude
  • good health
  • good eyesight
  • good finger and manual dexterity
  • problem solving and critical thinking abilities
  • excellent verbal and non-verbal communication skills
  • an interest in working with people and working as a member of a team

Dental Hygienists should enjoy working with and consulting others, solving problems, doing precise work with instruments and equipment, providing client care and teaching individuals and groups.

Education/Training Required

Diploma of Dental Hygiene(DDH) leading to Bachelor of Dental Hygiene (BDH)

Schools Offering Career Program

Dalhousie University
Oulton College

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Average Starting Salary

Growth Rate

Education Required
2-3 years