A dental receptionist is the team member who is responsible for greeting and assisting you when you arrive at the clinic. Dental receptionists also look after billing clients and their insurance companies, maintaining client accounts, and coordinating the dental team’s schedules.
A dental assistant is the team member who prepares you for treatment, assists other oral health professionals during treatment, processes instruments to ensure infection control standards are met, and maintains dental equipment. A dental assistant may also take x-rays, prepare dental materials, manage dental records and, in some provinces, polish teeth and apply fluoride treatments.
A dental hygienist assesses your oral health by examining your teeth, gums, and mouth, taking x-rays, and performing oral cancer screenings. A dental hygienist will then provide appropriate clinical therapy, including removing calculus, plaque, and stain, and applying fluoride and sealants to help prevent and stabilize cavities. In some provinces, dental hygienists can prescribe medications. Dental hygienists also offer oral health education and instruction to help you maintain good oral hygiene habits at home.