Why does this dentist clean my teeth and not a hygienist?
April 22, 2018
Your dentist, Adrian Longworth, is very passionate about the gum health of his patients. Some dental hygienists are also very talented at what they do. However, Adrian does like to keep tight control of the whole process of care. So he does not have a dental hygienist working for him unless he has utmost confidence in the hygienist's abilities. He will refer you to a specialist periodontist when it is indicated or preferred. But at the early stage of assessment at the Safety Bay dental Care Centre, Adrian believes it is a crucial time. He will make the initial full assessment via a detailed examination. Now here is the issue. It is easier to see all the tooth detail when the teeth are clean. So the cleaning of the teeth by Adrian compliments his examination process. In this cleaning process (usually 20 minutes) Adrian's mind is going 100% to evaluate what is going on with your teeth, gums and bite. He is also using that 20 minutes to work ahead and formulate complicated treatment plans for you to chose from. He is also working on the way he will present and communicate your dental problems to you in a way that you will be able to understand and a way that will leave you motivated to achieve the best of dental health. So although he is possibly overqualified to be doing a "simple scale and clean" that is usually performed by a dental hygienist, Adrian makes the absolute most of that tooth cleaning time in determining much higher level assessment and objectives. For those patients with gum disease, Adrian then takes things further and will venture into the more specialized area of periodontics. He does comprehensive periodontal probing on every patient at every examination. The results of the periodontal probing determines if he will offer to refer you to a Periodontist or perhaps our "in house hygienist" Jill Ashenhurst. Jill has 30 years experience in the dental industry. If you have gum pockets over 5mm in depth a referral will be offered. If you want Adrian to deal with pockets of 5 to 7mm instead of seeing a Periodontist or a hygienist, Adrian will try the treatment routine and fully evaluate the success over the following months. If there is any failure of your gums to respond he will again ask you if you wish to see a periodontist. So this is all a very progressive, communicative process where clever assessments are made, communicated well and modifications of the treatment plan are made in response to the results.
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