Whenever you schedule an appointment to visit a Des Cedres Dental Clinic you are probably aware that there is a very good chance you will end up seeing a handful of people that day. Obviously, the first person you are likely to see is the receptionist. Obviously this is a common person to encounter whenever you visit any type of professional office. This is the person who greets you and asks your name to check the records and verify your appointment. They will typically give you some paperwork to fill out and then tell the doctor you have arrived so they can prepare for your examination.
However, the doctor is typically not the next person you will see. Once the receptionist checks you in—and you wait a few minutes, as is often the case—they will typically take you to the dentist’s chair. Before you visit the dentist, though, you will probably be visited by the dental hygienist. This is not the same thing as a dental assistant—which we will discuss, here.
What does a Dental Hygienist Do?
The first person you will see once you make it into the dentist’s chair is the dental hygienist. As their title implies, this person is responsible for performing the deep cleaning that you should get twice a year. Their job is to clean and polish your teeth, often flossing for you, and to administer the fluoride treatment. They might also remove hard and soft deposits with the scraper or the water pick; and they might also develop the dental x-rays. The hygienist may also stay on hand to assist the dentist during their official examination of your teeth.
What does a Dental Assistant Do?
That is not to be confused, of course, with what a dental assistant does. The dental assistant actually does not perform any dental cleaning or surgical procedures. Their job is more clerical and preparatory. Mostly, the dental assistant is responsible for setting up and breaking down the office. They might store, clean, disinfect, and lay out the tools used throughout the day. They will probably also handle patient records and medical history, filing, that sort of thing.