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20/Feb/2011

Why is it important?

There is a significant risk of cross infection between patients and dental personnel. Patient’s safety and well-being is of utmost priority to every dental team. Effective infection control helps in preventing transmission of infectious diseases (such as Hepatitis B & C, HIV etc.). We strictly adhere to universal precautions developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in our dental clinic. 

What are the precautions?

  • Medical history
  • Personal Hygiene
  • Personal Protection
  • Handling Dental Instrument
  • Surface cleaning

Medical history

Thorough medical history is mandatory and should be up-dated not only to detect any presence of active infections but some medical conditions may adversely affect the content of the dental treatments.

Personal hygiene

Hand washing

Hand hygiene is the most important measure to prevent spread of infection. Hand washing prior to and immediately after every visit as hands are the most common way to transmit diseases.

Personal protection

Appropriate protective equipments such as uniform/ disposable gown, masks, gloves and protective eyewear are required to protect dental personnel from spatter and aerosols during dental treatment. After each appointment, disposable items such as face masks and gloves are discarded.

Handling Dental instruments

Used instruments are cleaned and presoak in disinfactant
The dental instruments are place in the ultrasonic cleaner to further cleaning
After cleaning, the instrument are packed before sterilization
After sterilization, they will be placed back into the drawers ready to be used again!!

Non-disposable items like dental tools are cleaned and sterilized before use. Disposable items such as injection needle and blades are disposed and never reused on another patient. Handpieces are cleaned with handpiece cleaner unit before re-use. Dental instruments are presoaked in the disinfectant and cleaned, packed and sent to autoclave unit to be sterilized after every use. After sterilization, all the instruments are stored in drawers to prevent recontamination.

Surface disinfection

Disinfection Solution

Before any appointment, all the surfaces such as dental chair, light handles and handpieces are wiped and cleaned. Disposable coverings are used on handpieces and suctions and discarded after use.

Waste disposal

Yellow Bin

Sharp wastes such as needles and blades are disposed into special bin called Yellow Bin. Clinical waste will be collected in the clinical waste bin.

Conclusion

Effective infective control is crucial in dental practice so that oral health can be delivered to patients in a safe manner.

We have the best infection control and sterilization method in town and we always upkeep ourselves with the latest technology and ideas to keep our customers and ourselves safe. I guess most of us want the cleanest and safest clinic as none of us want to get infected when we just go for a simple scaling!!


Dr. Janice Ng
30/Dec/2010

Sterilization

Dental instrument that are used or contaminated have to be cleaned and bacteria-free before reuse. Therefore, they need to be sterilized before use.  Sterilization is a term referring to any process that eliminates (removes) or kills all forms of life, including transmissible agents (such as fungi, bacteria, viruses, spore forms, etc.) present on a surface, contained in a fluid, in medication, or in a compound such as biological culture media. Sterilization can be achieved by applying the proper combination of heat, chemicals, irradiation, high pressure, and filtration. (Source from wikipedia)

Autoclave

In dentistry, we use autoclave to sterilize our dental instruments. Autoclave is a device to sterilize equipment and supplies by subjecting them to high pressure saturated steam at 121 °C or more, typically for 15–20 minutes depending on the size of the load and the contents. It was invented by Charles Chamberland in 1879, although a precursor known as the steam digester was created by Denis Papin in 1679. The name comes from Greek auto, ultimately meaning self, and Latin clavis meaning key — a self-locking device. (Source from wikipedia)

Most dental clinic use autoclave unit to sterilize their instruments. According to the European Standard EN 13060, autoclave are divided into:

Type B- It has 3-times per-vacuum preceding vacuum drying. It can be used on wrapped and hollow instruments, which means a piece of equipment can be sterilized now for use later. This is the most effective autoclave as the steam able to penetrates deep into the pouches/wrappers or even double pouched instruments.

Type S – Comes with a one times pre-vacuum and vacuum drying function and efficient quick spraying steam generator. It can’t be used to sterilize instruments which are double pouch or the instruments which are wrapped in the thick wrapper/pouch.

Type N – This autoclave comes without vacuum function, it can be used for hollow instruments and solid instruments.This autoclaves are only suitable for a specific type of

load–for solid, unwrapped instruments.

Autoclave type B
Autoclave type B

Type B European Standard Autoclave – It has the highest standard among the type S and type N. It allows deep penetration into pouched/wrapped instrument. Type B Autoclave used widely in operating theater and it is used by our clinic too.

 






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