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Dental Hygiene
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Core Performance Standards for Dental Hygiene

Core Performance Standards for Dental Hygiene

Introduction

Professional Dental Hygiene AHS practice requires specific qualifications, abilities, knowledge, and skills. Typically, Dental Hygiene AHS employers specify these as "minimal essential standards and functions" for employment as a Dental Hygiene AHS practitioner. Although qualifications may vary among employers, the following list is provided to enable applicants and accepted students to informally assess their own capabilities for a Dental Hygiene AHS profession prior to entering the program.

Essential Standards and Functions

  1. Work in a seated, static position for extended periods of time throughout the work day.
  2. Potential to lift or assist adult and child patients from wheelchair or walking devices (walkers, crutches) to the dental patient chair.
  3. Use hands, wrists and arms to physically apply up to ten pounds of pressure in the performance of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation procedures (State Licensure requirement)
  4. Be able to move freely and physically maneuver in small spaces.
  5. Be able to bend from waist, turn torso from side to side, and bend neck to gain access to patient work areas. 
  6. Demonstrate sufficient endurance to complete mentally and physically stressful eight hour workdays.
  7. Communicate effectively in the English language, both orally and in writing, using appropriate grammar, spelling, vocabulary and word usage. 
  8. Respond and react immediately to verbal instruction and requests from employer dentist or patient.
  9. Comprehend verbal and written directions, and make appropriate and legal notation.
  10. Access patient/client information electronically and document care provided.
  11. Possess sufficient visual acuity to perform close and distant visual activities involving objects, persons, and paperwork, as well as the ability to discriminate depth perception and discern color gradient.
  12. Read instruments of millimeter calibration within the oral cavity, detect dullness of bladed instruments and discern surface textures with diagnostic instruments.
  13. Perform mathematical calculations for preparation and administration of topical and local anesthetics, nitrous oxide and irrigation medicaments in a timely manner.
  14. Possess sufficient fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination to use small bladed instruments and dental/hygiene equipment.
  15. Possess sufficient auscultation and olfaction skills to discern healthy and unhealthy objective findings.
  16. Possess ability to work efficiently in blood producing dental hygiene treatments.
  17. Abide by Ethical, Legal and Professional Codes for the treatment of patients with regard to culture, race, or creed.

Contact: 

Melinda K Gill • (865) 354-3000 ext. 2128 • Click name for email address

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