What is a Dental Hygienist?

Dental hygienists are primary oral health care professionals who provide clinical assessments and therapy, oral health education, and offer health promotion strategies to people of all ages.

Where are Dental Hygienists Educated?

Dental hygienists are educated at universities and colleges across Canada. Dental hygiene students study the following key topics: anatomy and physiology, microbiology and infection control, health promotion and disease prevention, and nutrition and health. While most dental hygienists in Canada hold a three-year diploma, many have gone on
to complete bachelor’s and master’s degrees in dental hygiene, dental science, public health, and other related disciplines.

Dental Hygienists are Regulated Health Professionals

In order to practise in Canada, dental hygienists must be registered or licensed by the appropriate regulatory body. Requirements for registration vary by province or territory, but all have one goal — to protect the public. You can be confident that your registered dental hygienist has met high standards and is able to provide you with quality care.

College of Dental Hygienists

Did You Know? Dental Hygienists…

• Form the sixth largest regulated health profession in Canada, with more than 29,549 practitioners

• Provide services and programs to people of all ages, addressing issues related to oral and overall health

• Practise in a variety of settings, including public health agencies, private clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities, educational and research institutions, and dental industry

• Practise with health professionals including denturists, physicians, nurses, physiotherapists, chiropractors, and massage therapists as well as with dentists

• Have established their own independent practices to make oral health care more accessible to all