Australian family dentists and dental hygienists are taking a stand against ‘white-washing’ in dental practices
Dentists in Melbourne and Perth have announced they will not accept dental hygmies and white-wash procedures, amid fears the practice could lead to an increase in the rates of cavities.
Key points:Dr Paul Ritchie, chief executive of the Victorian Association of Dental Hygienist (VDHA), says the practice of ‘white washing’ can be harmful to people who have had a dental procedure, such as a crown or enamel replacementThe Victorian Dental Association (VDCA) says dentists should not accept white-washing practicesDr Ritchie said there was no scientific evidence to support the practice.
“What we’ve seen in the past has been the ‘white wash’ and there’s not a lot of evidence to show the benefits of it,” he said.
“We’ve seen many cases where people have had dental procedures and they’re still having problems later on in life, and it’s not clear that there’s any benefit.”‘
It’s not just dentists’: Victorian dentist Dr RitchieDr Ritter said the practice was not just about dentists being able to deliver a “good dental work”.
“It’s about dentistry being able give the best dental care and the best care is always the most rewarding,” he told ABC radio on Wednesday.
“That’s why we have to have a healthy practice and it is really important for us to make sure that we’re not doing it for the wrong reasons.”‘
There is a danger of people believing what they are being told’Dr Ritton said the association had received numerous complaints from dentists who believed the practice should be allowed, particularly with the new government coming into power.
“I think a lot [of] dentists are afraid to speak up about what they think is going on in their practice, so they’re not going to talk to anybody and they’ll be afraid to say anything,” he added.
“So there is a risk of people being led to believe what they’re being told.”
He said the government should also investigate the practice’s long-term effects on the public.
“They’ve been doing it in the United States and the UK and Canada, and there are a lot more teeth to be had than there are people to have them, so that’s not going anywhere,” he explained.
“And then you’ve got the impact that it’s having on the community.”
Dr Ritzer said there were no studies showing that the practice had a positive impact on people’s health.
“People are not looking at these issues and saying, ‘OK, I’d rather do something else’, they’re looking at the long- term consequences and the long term effects that can be had by not doing these types of dental procedures,” he continued.
“When people see a dentist who’s doing something that’s going to improve their life, it’s a good thing.”