Dental hygienist

Risk level

Making dentures look good

Dental hygienists ensure that everything is nice and clean in patients' mouths. They also give advice on how to look after our teeth, take samples, polish and remove tartar. It's important to have clean hands when working with patients, but gloves and many handwashes can sometimes lead to eczema.

What are the risks?

Dental hygienists wear gloves for much of their working day, which can make hands moist and clammy in the long run. Lots of handwashing every day is also tough on the skin and some dental hygienists suffer with hand eczema, where the skin becomes dry, red and flaky with cracks and blisters that itch.

Prevention and avoidance

Protect your skin by frequently rubbing a moisturising cream into the hands. It's also a good idea to use a mild soap when washing your hands. If you suffer from eczema or did so when you were little (atopic eczema), you should find out more about the risks before deciding to become a dental hygienist.

Want to know more?

If you have any questions or want to know more about allergy, asthma and eczema when working as a dental hygienist, get in touch with your school nurse or careers adviser.