The dental hygiene diagnosis and treatment plan involves many aspects of dentistry. A successful treatment plan requires strong critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
Our goal as dental hygienists is not only to bring our patients to periodontal health, but to maintain it.
The Dental Hygiene Process of Care
The ADHA set guidelines that each licensed dental hygienist should follow when carrying out their diagnosis and treatment plan. This framework is known as the Dental Hygiene Process of Care.
This process of care plan is just as valuable as the cosmetic, restorative and oral health care plans developed by other dental professionals involved in the care of these patients.
The dental hygiene process of care is as follows: Assessment, dental hygiene diagnosis, planning, implementation, evaluation and documentation.
As licensed professionals, dental hygienists are expected to use this framework, as well as their own professional judgement, when treating patients. In addition, it is important that we foster good communication with our patients, in order for them to provide us with informed consent for treatment.
Limits to Our Treatment Planning in Germany
Germany recently updated the scope of practice and delegation of responsibilities to dental hygienists. Essentially, only a dentist can diagnose periodontal disease. This means that only a dentist can provide PSR and periodontal findings for periodontal treatment. What is currently within the scope of a hygienist in Germany?
Dental Hygienists’ Scope of Practice in Germany
The Right Dental Hygiene Treatment Plan
A thorough knowledge of the body and its processes is necessary to make the right treatment plan.
Some of these aspects include: head and neck anatomy, radiology, pharmacology, and an understanding of the body’s inflammatory response. In order to bring a patient to oral health, surgical or non-surgical interventions are necessary.
So now let’s test your skills. Assuming you have full autonomy to assess and treat the following patients, what treatment plans would you advise?
What treatment is right for these patients?
Click on the images below to be taken to an anonymous survey. This anonymous survey allows you to share how you would treat each patient selected. At the end of the survey, you will find out what treatment the patient eventually received in the office.