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Should you hire a restorative dental hygienist?

With the restorative dentistry market anticipated to be worth $25.9 billion by 2025, now is a great time to consider hiring a restorative dental hygienist if your dental practice is lacking one. While hiring an RDH with experience in restorative dentistry might seem an easy way to increase revenue, it might not be the right choice for every dental practice owner.

To help you decide if employing a restorative dental hygienist is the right move for your business, here’s an overview of what you need to know when expanding your team in this direction.

Is there demand for restorative dentistry?

There certainly is. Between 2020 and 2025, the global restorative dentistry market is expected to grow with a CAGR of 6.7%. This significant growth is due to an increasing number of dental practices shifting toward group and corporate dental practices, the embracing of digital dentistry, greater demand for cosmetic dentistry and a boost in dental tourism. 

How much does a restorative dental hygienist make?

According to ZipRecruiter, the average restorative dental hygienist salary is $72,765 per year.


Dental salaries vary hugely according to geographical location. So depending on where your practice is located, you could end up paying more or less than the average. For example, if your practice is based in Houston, Texas, you can expect to pay a restorative dental hygienist around $46,578 per year. 

What are the benefits of hiring a restorative dental hygienist?

The main benefit of hiring a restorative dental hygienist is to boost the profit of your dental practice. There are several ways they can help you do this:

Provide more services

Being able to provide your patients with more services benefits your practice in a myriad of ways. Offering a broader range of treatments means you’re more likely to gain new patients who have been let down by other practices in the area. What’s more, you’re also likely to retain more of your current patients, since you don’t risk referring them to other practices for specialist treatment.

ADHA lists the duties a restorative dental hygienist can carry out as:

  • Applying cavity liners and bases.
  • Placing and removing temporary restorations.
  • Placing and removing temporary crowns.
  • Placing, carving and finishing amalgam restoration.
  • Placing and finishing composite resin silicate restoration.

As with many dental hygienist duties, each state decides which tasks an RDH can perform, which ones they can’t perform and the required qualifications. Here’s a handy chart you can use to confirm which responsibilities a restorative dental hygienist could take care of if you took them on board.

Treat more patients

Adding another RDH to your team should mean you’re able to treat more patients and increase your practice’s revenue. While you’re working on one patient with your regular dental hygienist in one room, your restorative dental hygienist could be carrying out a restorative treatment in another room.

As previously mentioned, the work a registered dental hygienist and a restorative dental hygienist can do without direct supervision from the dentist varies by state. Check the latest ADHA documentation to find out how much freedom an RDH is permitted in your practice before moving onto the hiring stage.

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Provide better care

A restorative dental hygienist will help reduce your stress levels if you’re feeling overworked. It’s likely there are some tasks your regular dental hygienist isn’t qualified to do, which forces you to complete the task yourself. When you continue to overload yourself with the responsibilities of treating patients and running a business, it’s easy to get burned out. And what often follows is poor patient care.

When you’ve got someone you can share at least part of your workload with, you’ll feel a lot less stressed and will perform better. Patients can easily tell the difference between a dentist who has too much on their plate and one that’s found the perfect balance. Do your patients a favor and delegate some of your work to a restorative dental hygienist so you can offer them the five-star service they deserve

Is there another solution?

If you can’t afford to hire a restorative dental hygienist at this time or you’re not convinced expanding your team is the right move for your business, there is another solution you can take advantage of to test the water.

Hire a temporary restorative dental hygienist with Cloud Dentistry. 

A restorative dental hygienist is simply an RDH who performs restorative procedures in addition to regular preventative treatment. After completing all the requirements necessary to become a registered dental hygienist, an RDH then needs to complete a restorative dentistry program. When they’ve done that, they become eligible to take the Western Regional Examining Board’s test to become certified in their state.

When looking for a qualified professional for your practice with Cloud Dentistry, simply focus on dental hygienist profiles which list experience with restorative dentistry. After you’ve shortlisted a few candidates, use the platform’s peer-to-peer messaging system to discuss the placement with them in real time. When you’ve found the right RDH to suit your practice, you can hire them directly through live schedulers.

When you hire temp staff this way, you get maximum value for your budget. If you know you’ve only got one appointment that requires the assistance of a restorative dental hygienist, you can hire the best RDH for the job exclusively for the hours required for the appointment. This way of staffing your practice saves you a small fortune compared to hiring traditional full-time employees.

If your chosen restorative dental hygienist is an excellent fit for your practice and you want to take them on full-time so you can increase your bottom line, you’ll be glad to hear you don’t have to pay a penny more when you hire with Cloud Dentistry.

While most dental temp agencies charge you everything from 50% of the worker’s monthly rate to 2% of the worker’s annual income in permanent placement fees, Cloud Dentistry doesn’t charge you anything at all if you want to change someone from a temp worker to a permanent employee.

Hiring a restorative dental hygienist could make you a lot of money

According to recent reports, restorative dentistry is anticipated to be increasingly popular over the next five years. If you get in on the trend early and start offering restorative dental treatments sooner rather than later, you’ll reap more financial benefits than dental practice owners who wait until the last minute.

Even if you can’t currently afford to increase your permanent team, there are still other ways you can bring on a restorative dental hygienist without blowing your staffing budget. 

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