The increasing shift towards aesthetic and advanced dentistry has created new roles and opportunities for hygienists. The traditional hygiene role is relatively narrow and isolated in nature; this disconnection usually results in hygienists being referred as the cleaning ladies or Prima Donnas, who normally do not work with anyone else or are involved with any front and back office chores or routines.
Higher levels of hygiene cross function, inter-office communication, and team oriented participation are expected in aesthetic practices where multi-stage patient education and care is required. Unlike other staffs, hygienists are frontline practitioners who spend a fixed duration working hands on patients, thus, often have the authorities and opportunities to introduce and educate patients about aesthetic dental transformations.
Each practice will have different levels of hygiene involvement and roles, ranging from comprehensive pre-procedural education to post transformation care. The best way to find the ideal practice starts with the self assessment of knowledge and believes in aesthetic dental methodology.
Laser has been generalized into dentistry because of the vast benefits. Hygienists routinely use laser for non surgical gum treatment and bleaching teeth.
Quick*Painless*No or minimal post-operative soreness or discomfort*Very precise*Allows for instant curing and hardening of fillings and cements.
Intraoral Camera System
Intraoral camera systems easily capture images of patients’ teeth and areas around the teeth that are difficult for practitioners to see.
Imaging allows for immediate and simple analysis*Fixed focus lens allows practitioners to take highly detailed pictures*Patient is able to see the images clearly on a flat screen monitor
Periodontal Therapy Systems
Most hygienists in advanced practice settings are in charge of implementing the soft tissue management which uses the state-of-the-art scaler and irrigation system that significantly improves the quality of the treatment while reducing the need for excessive hand instrumentation.
Quick 3-step approach to the prevention, treatment and control of periodontal disease*Heated irrigation system that effectively delivers solutions accomplishes gross scaling to definitive periodontal debridement total patient comfort.
The advanced hygienists use this technology to measure and study the pattern of open and close jaw motion in three dimensions to electronically induce facial and jaw muscles into naturally relaxed state for occlusion adjustments.
It is about going beyond the traditional patient care to passionately pursue the total satisfaction of each successful case of aesthetic transformation. The passion and confidence gained through aesthetic transformation starts with each practitioner. I believe and have personally benefited tremendously from this transformation (see my before and after photos). The satisfaction, enthusiasm and confidence I gained from my aesthetic transformation can be seen and felt by every patient.
Practitioners' successful presentation and talent to create that perfect smile is only half of the success in aesthetic dentistry. It is inevitable that a certain amount of questions will arise after the aesthetic permanent changes that are disputable in the views of traditional dental ideologies.
Emphasis on post transformation care differentiates the successful aesthetic practices from ordinary ones. The successful aesthetic practices will address and emphasize maintenance care; hygiene plays a key role to this function.
As a hygienist I find it impossible to answer these post transformation questions and doubts to the same satisfaction as going into the transformation without having to gone through it myself, along with the total believe and passion.
Evaluate and seek for positions reflecting your skills. Entry level hygienists can start with general cleaning functions by seeing more patients. More experienced and confident hygienists, who can establish patient rapport and present aesthetic and advanced dentistry values, should be encouraged to spend as much time as possible with each patient.
Successful hygiene productions usually result from relatively an inflexible schedule with fewer patients. Some of the most successful aesthetic dentistry practitioners hire hygienists for production purposes only. These offices no longer have general staffs, rather hygienists with articulating skills and a production track record to successfully introduce and coordinate the entire makeover experience. Hygienists in these settings hardly engage in any traditional functions.
Compensation is based on your experience and skills. (Perks, bonuses, retirement funds, NO FRILLS.) Our profession has always been in high demand. Many offices are now offering full benefit packages as part of the perks to retain suitable hygienists. This is mutually beneficial, as hygiene turnovers usually do not carry a positive impact on the increasing reliance of hygiene based production and the overall practice image.
Full time hygiene is emerging as the norm. Don't be afraid to take on general office chores through general cross function as part of the team during peak seasons or days with irregular schedules. However, DO NOT over extend these general chores as your responsibility, since blurring that line through convenience may actually decrease your professional contributions. Make sure these general chores have been designated to members of the team, with you as backup and redundancy basis. Higher reliance on hygiene production can only work with relatively fewer scheduled patients which will inevitably result in more justified downtimes. These downtimes should be invested on making extra contacts to build patient rapport or general studies to keep abreast with the latest dental practices to further enhance the production based role.
Provided over ten years of aesthetic hygienist services in advanced dental practice settings.
Received multiple certifications and accreditations from Las Vegas Institute and UCSF.
Provided over five years of comprehensive combined hygiene and neuromuscular treatment/consultations with latest K7 update.
Certified laser therapist.
Ronald Ronsenblatt, DDS
435 N Bedford Dr Ste 410
Beverly Hills, CA 90210-4383
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