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Children's dental hygienist in the UK, is this usual?

(23 Posts)
DingbatsFur Sat 30-Jan-16 18:55:32

So, I should add that I was brought up in North America and not in the UK.
We're currently registered with a nice family friendly NHS dental practice. My kids brush their teeth and visit the dentist every 6 months. She checks their teeth and gives them a sticker.
I made muttering noises about fluoride treatments and she said well I could give themsome mouthwash when they came home from school.
A couple of months ago the head dentist retired, the dental surgey then pimped itself up and hired a dental hygienist who could see children.
I made appointments for both kids to get their teeth checked over. The staff were very suprised, but I explained where I came from children visited a dental hygienist reguarly.
We had the appointments today, she was very nice, talked to the kids about the dangers of sugar, showed them how to brush their teeth in detail and gave them a chart. Shehadsome good suggestions but didn't actually look inside their mouths.
For this I paid £40.
There was no mention of a follow up visit or a suggestion that next time she might clean their teeth. The kids are 7 & 9.
I am confused.

cece Sat 30-Jan-16 18:57:51

I have never known children visit a hygienist.

wonkylegs Sat 30-Jan-16 19:01:00

My son never visits the dental hygienist, in fact I didn't visit one until I was 35 when I had my first and only scale and polish.
We see the dentist for check up, every 6mths - they check teeth over and will give pointers for better brushing technique. We both have perfect teeth and gums.
My husband sees the hygienist every 6mths but he has problem gums and slightly crooked teeth so he has a scale and polish to get the awkward bits.

Out2pasture Sat 30-Jan-16 19:05:27

here in Canada the kids are seen from 2 on and they even offer free flouride treatments at the health clinic. I would have expected more hands on treatment. I would call the clinic up and clarify your past experience and your expectations.

dementedpixie Sat 30-Jan-16 19:10:05

No they don't see an hygienist in the UK. The dentist has used a pick thing to remove tartar from betwen dd's two front teeth but that's as far as cleaning them goes. Certain areas do offer fluoride varnishing. Have they had fissure sealants done on their molars?

ReallyTired Sat 30-Jan-16 19:14:22

My dentist does the dental hygiene as well as the check up. She scrapes all the Tatar off my teeth and cleans them at the same appointment as she does the check up. My children go to a different dentist where they do see a hygienist who spends time teaching them decent cleaning technique.

You get what you pay for. Nhs dentistry is free, but a lot more basic than private dentistry.

LIZS Sat 30-Jan-16 19:22:15

We get hygienist appointments under Denplan. Kids go every 6 months or so. Not routine under nhs.

DingbatsFur Sat 30-Jan-16 19:22:27

Yes, I paid for this service. I'd happily pay for fluoride treatments etc similar to what there is in Canada. The dentist checks their teeth but doesn't clean them.
Their is no fluoride in the water here.
Sweets are offered to them everywhere here.
I feel like they are trundling towards cavities.

dementedpixie Sat 30-Jan-16 19:25:34

I would ask about fluoride varnishing and fissure sealants if they don't have them already.

My dentist does the scale and polish themself rather than sending to the hygienist but as I said will remove tartar manually from the kids if required without giving a full scale and polish to them

dementedpixie Sat 30-Jan-16 19:26:05

We have no fluoride here either (scotland )

DingbatsFur Sat 30-Jan-16 19:45:29

lizs, does the hygienist clean their teeth when they visit?
Maybe this practice is just a bit too noninterventionist for my taste.
I will shop around.

Palomb Sat 30-Jan-16 20:01:45

My NHS dentist has given both my DC fluoride treatments and my eldest has had a clean on her adult teeth so it obviously depends on the dentist.

LIZS Sat 30-Jan-16 20:05:26

She removes any tartar build up and gives them a polish. Also did fissure sealant on ds rear molars. He currently has braces so cleanliness extra important. Appointments are only 10-15 minutes.

dementedpixie Sat 30-Jan-16 20:11:57

Our regular dentist did fissure sealants on Dd/ds teeth.

TheGreatSnafu Sun 31-Jan-16 18:46:19

We go to a private children's dentist. They see hygienist with every checkup - this includes using the dye to help with identifying weak cleaning spots, cleaning and polishing.

I don't want flouride treatment but we do have sealants put on demineralised teeth.

Willdoitinaminute Mon 08-Feb-16 23:08:08

Cleaning children's teeth once every six months at the surgery is absolutely pointless. Using the appointment time to educate them and demonstrate oral hygiene techniques is of far greater value.
Applying fluoride varnishes should be done every six months and is recommended by NHS for all children between 3-16 yrs.
Polishing children's teeth is a purely cosmetic procedure, unless they are filthy and haven't been near a brush for a few weeks.
It's what they do every morning and night at home that is essential.
A good hygienist will use disclosing solution to demonstrate to a child whether they are cleaning properly. Then they will get the child to clean their own teeth and give suitable advice/demonstrate technique if improvement is needed. Dietary advice is essential for both child and parent. If the child has clean healthy teeth then little more is required.

MyFriendsCallMeOh Mon 08-Feb-16 23:19:02

I'm in the USA and before moving here we lived in Singapore. Every 6 months, in additional to the standard dental check, either the dentist or a hygienist cleans and flosses my kids teeth, showing them and explaining again how to do it, they also get flouride treatment and their molars have been sealed. They have X-rays every 12 months. It was the same in both countries.

Never heard of a hygienist that doesn't look inside mouths confused

TeaT1me Mon 08-Feb-16 23:23:49

Why on earth would you need x rays every 12 months?! Is that just a money spinner?

MyFriendsCallMeOh Mon 08-Feb-16 23:31:49

Checks for cavities between teeth mostly, but also number and position of teeth inside the gums, diseases and nine conditions etc, I think a lot of countries recommend this. I also have 6 monthly X-rays at the dentist, it's normal here.

MyFriendsCallMeOh Mon 08-Feb-16 23:32:11

*bone. Not nine

annandale Mon 08-Feb-16 23:37:48

I had great hygienist intervention as a child from a normal but forward thinking NHS practice. Since then the only decent hygienist sessions I have had have been with a private practice, and I agree totally about the difference between telling your children how to do something and coaching them through doing it themselves/showing them how to do it. So I believe good hygienist sessions do exist but you have to look for them, and since people don't often have them here, they don't know they are missing out.

OrchardDweller Mon 08-Feb-16 23:42:50

My DC are now grown up but have seen the hygienist regularly since they were small. I know this is unusual but the dentist we saw in London (private) started us on the path. It was particularly useful when they had braces as sometimes they were missing bits when brushing. Surprised that visiting the hygienist isn't more popular here in the UK. My DC both have fantastic looking teeth now.

PitilessYank Mon 08-Feb-16 23:52:32

At our dentist, adults and children get a cleaning from the hygienist and a quick check by the dentist every six months, and children get the sealant once and fluoride treatment yearly. X-rays are every two years unless an issue arises.

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