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Dental Assistant vs Hygienist: What is the difference?

You may have wondered about the difference between a hygienist and a dental assistant. Here’s a short explanation.

The hygienist is responsible not only for prevention, detection and treatment of periodontal disease, but also for educating patients about the disease and teaching proper home care techniques. During treatment, your hygienist removes plaque, calculus, and stain deposits from your teeth. Her formal education of two or more years also prepares her to recognize other dental problems such as decay.

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Smooth_function in the operatories can be attributed to the conscientious planning and preparation by the dental assistant. Prior to your arrival, she organizes the appropriate material and instruments needed for your procedure. During your visit she will assist the dentist while also attending to your comfort and needs. Her training typically involves a six-month to two-year program, extensive on the job training, and continuing education.

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