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The Oral Health Therapist functions as an important member of a multi-disciplinary health care team. Oral Health Therapist works in conjunction with licensed dentists.

Oral Health Therapist Register

With the enactment of the Dental Registration Act on 1st of January 2008, Oral Health Therapists (OHTs) are required to register with the Singapore Dental Council (SDC). Their names would appear on Division 3 of the Dental Register.

The registration and regulation of OHTs heralds a new era of Dentistry in Singapore as the OHTs would now be able to seek employment and work in the private sector.

Sub-registers

The register is divided into two parts, namely:

Part I of the register of OHT   -  must work in collaboration with a Div I dentist by referral, however, direct supervision of the work is not required. OHT registered in Part I is still required to work within the prescribed scope of dentistry.

Eligibility

Applicant must:

(i)             have the requisite qualifications for registration as an OHT; and

(ii)            have worked a minimum of 5 years under the direct supervision of a Div I dentist in Singapore.

Part II of the register of OHT -  must work under supervision of registered dentists in Div I of the Dentists Register in an approved work place. OHT registered in Part II is required to work within the prescribed scope of dentistry.

OHTs under Part II registration, having undergone 5 years' supervision, may apply to Council for conversion to Part I registration. However, this will be subjected to Council's approval.

Eligibility

Applicant must:

(i)   have the requisite qualifications for registration as an OHT.

The Council may require a person with a qualification, other than a qualification specified in the Schedule, to undergo and pass a qualifying examination conducted or arranged by the Council or by such other person as the Council may appoint.

Types of OHTs

There are three categories of Oral Health Therapists, namely:

Dental Hygienist

Dental Therapist

Dental Hygienist/ Dental Therapist

Each category of OHT is restricted to the workscope that they can perform.

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(A) Dental Hygienists

Foreign trained dental hygienists with SDC-recognised qualifications will be able to register as Dental Hygienists.

The scope of work that can be performed by a dental hygienist include:

  1. Cleaning and polishing of teeth.
  2. Scaling of teeth.
  3. Root planing of teeth.
  4. Application to the teeth of solutions of sodium or stannous fluoride or such other similar prophylactic solutions as the Council may from time to time determine.
  5. Application of fissure sealants.
  6. Application of rubber dam.
  7. Exposure of radiographic films intraorally or extraorally for the investigation of lesions of the mouth, jaws, teeth and associated structures.
  8. Usage of infiltration anaesthesia in procedures such as scaling or root planing.
  9. Taking alginate impressions of the upper and lower dentition.
  10. Giving of advice on matters related to dental hygiene.

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(B) Dental Therapists

Up until 2002, the Health Promotion Board conducted a 3-year programme in dental therapy. Students who successfully completed this programme were awarded a Certificate in Dental Therapy.

Dental therapist may perform the following on a person who is 18 years of age or younger:

  1. Cleaning and polishing of teeth.
  2. Scaling of teeth.
  3. Any application to the teeth of solutions of sodium or stannous fluoride or such other similar prophylactic solutions as the Council may from time to time determine.
  4. Application of fissure sealants.
  5. Application of rubber dam.
  6. Extraction of primary teeth.
  7. Restoration of teeth using direct restorative materials.
  8. Exposure of radiographic films intraorally or extraorally for the investigation of lesions of the mouth, jaws, teeth and associated structures;
  9. Usage of infiltration anaesthesia in procedures such as scaling or direct restorative procedure.
  10. Taking alginate impressions of the upper and lower dentition.
  11. Giving of advice on matters related to dental hygiene.

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(C) Dental Therapists/ Hygienists

Graduates of Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) Diploma in Dental Hygiene and Therapy:

In 2003, NYP started a 3 year dental therapy and hygiene diploma programme. Clinical training is conducted at both Health Promotion Board and the National Dental Centre. Graduates are dually qualified as Dental Therapists as well as Dental Hygienists.

The scope of work that can be performed by a dental therapist/hygienist include:

  1. Cleaning and polishing of teeth.
  2. Scaling of teeth.
  3. Root planing of teeth.
  4. Application to the teeth of solutions of sodium or stannous fluoride or such other similar prophylactic solutions as the Council may from time to time determine.
  5. Application of fissure sealants.
  6. Application of rubber dam.
  7. Extraction of primary teeth of persons of 18 years of age or younger.
  8. Restoration of teeth of persons of 18 years of age or younger using direct restorative materials.
  9. Exposure of radiographic films intraorally or extraorally for the investigation of lesions of the mouth, jaws, teeth and associated structures.
  10. Usage of infiltration anaesthesia in procedures such as scaling, root planing, direct restorative procedure and extraction.
  11. Taking alginate impressions of the upper and lower dentition.
  12. Giving of advice on matters related to dental hygiene.

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Last Updated :  03 Jun 2013 15:34