Course Title: Scale teeth, debride root surfaces and stains from teeth

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2014

Course Code: DENT5803

Course Title: Scale teeth, debride root surfaces and stains from teeth

School: 155T Vocational Health and Sciences

Campus: City Campus

Program: C6119 - Advanced Diploma of Oral Health (Dental Hygiene)

Course Contact: Sue Fatone

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 93411406

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Nominal Hours: 40

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

HLTFA301B - Apply first aid
HLTAMBFC301B - Communicate with clients and colleagues to support health care
HLTDA410B - Apply the principles of radiation biology and protection in dental practice
HLDA411B - Prepare to expose a prescribed dental radiographic image
HLTDA412B - Produce a dental radiographic image
TAFEDH001 - Provide leadership in promoting effective and professional work practices
TAFEDH005 – Examine, record and assess patient histories and dental records to formulate a dental hygiene treatment plan

Course Description

This unit deals with the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to practice scaling teeth, debriding root surfaces and removing deposits and stains from the hard tissues to promote optimum oral health.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

TAFEDH006 Scale teeth, debride root surfaces and stains from teeth


1. Preparation and presentation of the surgery

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Equipment, materials and instruments required for the
patient’s treatment (including for any procedure(s) to be
undertaken in addition to scaling and stain removal) are
gathered and arranged within the treatment cubicle,
dispensed in appropriate quantity and used according to
relevant guidelines and manufacturer’s
1.2 Equipment and instruments are maintained according to
relevant guidelines for instrument maintenance
1.3 The surgery is prepared to cater for any predetermined
special needs of the patient
1.4 Hand scaling instruments are sharpened according to
relevant guidelines
1.5 All necessary safety precautions during the preparation
and presentation of the surgery have been followed


2. Prepare and assess the patient

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Patient’s medical history and records including dental
radiographs are reviewed to identify any
contraindications to proposed treatment modalities and
to confirm treatment prescriptions
2.2 Patient’s treatment plan and records are reviewed to
determine and confirm area of the mouth which is
requiring treatment and to review the severity of the
disease activity
2.3 An explanation of the scaling and stain removal process
and the possible sensations produced by any instrument
or equipment used is given to the patient. Adhering to
the principles of informed consent, the patient is
provided an opportunity to ask questions
2.4 The area of the mouth to be scaled is thoroughly
2.5 Previous treatment areas are reviewed to determine
patient’s response to treatment and necessity for any
further treatment
2.6 The need for pain control is determined through
discussion with the patient and any necessary
requirements are followed through
2.7 All proposed treatment modalities for the removal of
calculus, deposits and stain are conducted according to procedures and infection control policy and procedures
2.8 Socially inclusive communication skills are used at all
times and demonstrated behaviours encourage a
supportive treatment environment that is conducive to a
collaborative operator/patient relationship


3. Remove deposits and stains

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Extrinsic electronic scalers and various hand
instruments are selected as indicated in the treatment
plan to remove deposits and extrinsic stains on teeth
3.2 The patient is given instructions on the suction cannula
which is placed in their mouth for the use of the
electronic scaler
3.3 Adequate protection of the patient’s clothing is provided
3.4 Intermittent strokes are used to remove deposits and
extrinsic stains and adjustment to these strokes are
determined by the extent of the deposits
3.5 The electronic scaler is used according to relevant
guidelines in order to eliminate any potential damage to
the tooth surface
3.6 Hand scalers are used adhering to design principles for
effective removal of deposits
3.7 Operator effectiveness is reviewed intermittently so that
any adjustments required are identified and addressed
accordingly in order to achieve optimum results
3.8 Hand instruments are activated to utilise the
forearm/wrist action predominantly. Finger flexing is
employed minimally
3.9 Hand instruments are sharpened periodically to avoid
burnishing deposits and minimising tissue trauma
3.10 Haemorrhaging resulting from inflamed tissue and
treatment procedures is managed according to relevant
guidelines, in order to maintain a clear operative field,
minimise tissue trauma and allow for effective and safe
3.11 Fulcrums are utilised during instrumentation and are
safe and appropriate for the task being performed. Both
intra-oral and extra-oral fulcrums are used to optimise
operator effectiveness
3.12 Patient’s position is managed throughout the
appointment so that the patient’s comfort and the
operator’s requirements are addressed
3.13 Post operative care and instruction is provided to the patient

3.14 Follow up treatment and maintenance requirements are
identified and implemented, to provide an avenue for
review and assessment, and to provide ongoing
supportive periodontal care


4. Remove stains

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Nature of staining is assessed prior to removal, and
treatment procedure and selection of equipment needed
is adjusted accordingly for the removal of extrinsic
4.2 During the treatment, the patient is provided with
adequate comfort pauses
4.3 Care is executed to avoid tissue trauma or tooth
damage caused by the stain removal procedure
specifically in areas of any exposed root surfaces,
demineralised areas or teeth with highly inflamed
(haemorrhagic) adjacent gingival
4.4 On completion of the procedure, the patient’s mouth is
irrigated with water and air (unless contraindicated due
to tooth sensitivity), to review effectiveness of stain
removal. Interproximal debris is identified and removed
4.5 Post operative care is executed accordingly and clear
post treatment instructions are clearly given to the


5. Perform a prophylaxis

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Soft deposits on the teeth are assessed and prophylaxis
procedure adjusted accordingly
5.2 Sufficient prophylaxis agent is used at all times to avoid
unnecessary friction on the tooth surface
5.3 A slow speed handpiece with appropriate polishing
attachment is used with light intermittent strokes to
avoid excessive heat production
5.4 Care is taken throughout the whole procedure to avoid
trauma to any surrounding tissues
5.5 On completion of the procedure, the patient’s mouth is
irrigated with water and air to review effectiveness of
soft deposit removal on all tooth surfaces
5.6 Topical fluoride/tooth mousse is applied to assist with
the remineralisation of enamel surfaces
5.7 Post operative care is executed accordingly and clear
post treatment instructions are clearly given to the
5.8 Appropriate recall and review appointments are established to provide ongoing supportive oral health
care that meet the needs of the patient

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this unit you will have developed the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to practice scaling teeth, debriding root surfaces and removing deposits and stains from the hard tissues to promote optimum oral health.

Details of Learning Activities

Includes a combination of some or all of the following, Class attendance and participation, individual or group project work, e-learning, self-directed learning, Blackboard collaborate and Pre-clinical practice in the Simulation lab.

Teaching Schedule

Semester 2

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

Assessment includes Written  and Practical Assessment

Assessment Tasks

Overview of assessment
Assessment for this course forms part of the Advanced Diploma of Oral Health (Dental hygiene)
Refer to the Australian Dental Council June 2011 document “Professional attributes and competencies of the newly qualified dental hygienist for additional information”
Primary assessment involves on-going practical and applied assessment in a clinical workplace or simulated environment such as a supervised student clinic.
Assessment is typically based around written and/or online tests, assignments, reflective journals, evidence portfolio’s, logbooks and/or practical demonstrations.
Competency based training requires the student to be in attendance in order for assessment to be undertaken.
Assessment is undertaken through successful completion of all assessment activities and classroom, project & industry participation.
Assessments are spaced across the duration of the course, in order for your teacher to provide you with progressive feedback.
Feedback will be provided throughout the semester in class and/or online discussions, through individual and group feedback on practical exercises and by individual consultation.
If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Disability Liaison Unit if you would like to find out more.
An RMIT assessment charter ( ) summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your teachers.

Assessment Matrix

On completion of all formative assessments, student can undertake summative assessment

Summative Assessment
Written Examination ( 1 x 2 hr Theory): 50%
OSCE and Practical Assessment: (ergonomics; instrumentation techniques(ultrasonic and hand) , sharpening of instruments; preparation of surgery and patient; removing stains; performing a prophylaxis) Competency must be demonstrated. (50%)

Course Overview: Access Course Overview