Dental Hygienist

Service:Surface Fleet
Branch:Medical
Level:Rating,Apprenticeship
Healthcare
Adventure
Humanitarian aid
Medical
Sciences
A Royal Navy Dental Hygienist at work.
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The role at a glance

What you’ll do

As a Dental Hygienist in the Royal Navy you’ll be an integral part of a professional Dental Centre, working from a shore side establishment in the UK, or in challenging conditions on board one of our Ships at sea. This could be on an assault ship or state-of-the-art Aircraft carrier in a fully fitted dental surgery, or on board a frigate or Type 45 destroyer, utilising a portable dental unit in the medical centre. 

You’ll work as part of the dental team, under the guidance of the Senior Dental Officer. Your role will be to deliver effective military oral health care and advice to personnel from the Surface Fleet, Submarines, Fleet Air Arm and Royal Marines to ensure that they remain operationally deployable.

Your role

  • Providing dental hygiene care within your scope of practice
  • Helping patients maintain their oral health by preventing and treating periodontal disease
  • Educating patients and promoting good oral health practices
  • Providing preventative care and advice to patients
  • Organising and participating in unit health fairs and national oral health campaigns
  • Delivering oral health presentations to new entry recruits and officer cadets (in training establishments)
     

What you’ll get

Skills for life

Qualifications you'll gain

  • Study for GCSEs, A-Levels, NVQs or even a degree
  • Gain specialist vocational qualifications as your career progresses
  • Leadership and management skills

Skills you'll develop

  • The discipline and organisational skills needed to be part of a professional dental practice
  • Experience dealing with patients from all backgrounds

Career progression

What you'll need

Eligibility

You will need one of the following:

  • Diploma or BSc in Dental Hygiene  
  • Diploma or BSc in Dental Therapy
  • Diploma or BSc in Dental Hygiene and Therapy
  • BSc in Oral health Science (Hygiene and Therapy)

You can apply to join whilst still studying, but you will need to be qualified and registered with the General Dental Council before you start basic training.

  • If already qualified, you must be registered with the General Dental Council and provide evidence of Continuing Professional Development. You’ll need to be aged between 18-39
  • You need to be a minimum height of 151.5cm and within the healthy range for Body Mass Index (BMI)
  • You must be a British or Irish national, a Commonwealth citizen who has lived in the UK continuously for the 5 years prior to applying, or a dual national

Skills and interests

  • A passion for helping people
  • Great team players who thrive on working with others
  • Enthusiasm for working in highly challenging environments
  • A real sense of adventure
Check Eligibility

Starting your career

Joining process

Once you’ve confirmed your eligibility, the joining process is as follows:

  • Submit an application

    Once you’ve registered your interest and have satisfied the basic eligibility criteria, you will be sent an online application form

  • Naval Service Recruitment Test (NRST)

    You’ll be tested on general reasoning, verbal ability, numeracy and mechanical comprehension

  • Interview

    A formal interview to talk through your suitability for the role

  • Medical and eye tests

    These are quite comprehensive and must be completed by one of our Ministry of Defence-approved doctors

  • Pre-Joining Fitness Test (PJFT)

    This involves completing a 2.4km run on a treadmill within a certain time, at a fitness centre near you

  • Pre Royal Navy Course (PRNC)

    Pre Royal Navy Course (PRNC) – This four-day induction to life in the Royal Navy is a pass or fail course

  • Start training

    Once you’ve passed a Security Check, you’ll be offered a place at HMS Raleigh


Initial training

Your Royal Navy career begins with 10 weeks’ basic training at HMS Raleigh, a shore base in Torpoint, Cornwall. The discipline, teamwork, organisational, firefighting and weapon handling skills you learn here will stay with you right through your career.

Aim to get yourself as fit as possible before you arrive. You’ll be doing a lot of physical exercise, and you’ll find it much easier if you’re already in shape. There’s also a swimming test, so if you can’t swim, make sure you learn by the time you join us.


Professional training

Following basic traning you will join a dental team in one of the Naval bases.  Here you will put into practice all you have previously learnt.  You will work autonomously in your practice, with your own practice list.  You will also learn skills that will help you practice dental hygine at sea or alongside the Royal Marines.