Introduction

The professions of dentistry and dental hygiene each have a discipline-specific code of ethics. These codes describe the goals, aspirations and subsequent ethical standards of each group. A major purpose of a professional code of ethics is to bind the members of the group together, define expected standards of behavior and as a tool for self-regulation of its members. Codes are a touchstone by which all members of a profession can judge the acceptable parameters of behavior. More importantly, the code is the contract that the profession as a whole makes with society outlining the standards it will uphold.