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Dental Infection Control

Posted on 1/9/2023 by Pacific Oral and Facial Surgery Center
Dental Infection ControlEveryone became deeply concerned with hygiene during the pandemic. You may have stocked up on disinfectant and hand sanitizers. Since becoming exposed to airborne diseases is the nature of modern-day dentistry, the CDC saw fit to put in place guidelines to lower the risk of infection. The protocols are implemented in dental practices countrywide and they advise on cleaning instruments and equipment, and office spaces as well as personal protective equipment (PPE)

Cleaning instruments and equipment

The CDC advises in detail on the proper ways to clean dental equipment and instruments unless they have disposable alternatives. Critical instruments are the ones that are used to cut through tissue or bone, and they can interact with blood. The CDC advises that they should be sterilized every time they are used. The sterilization methods that are permitted include chemical vapor, autoclaving or dry heat.
Instruments classified as semi-critical include reusable impression trays and mirrors. These instruments do not pierce any surface, but they come into contact with the inner lining of your cheek or any other non-dry skin. The CDC recommends that they are sterilized following every application.
Non-critical instruments are those that simply come into contact with the skin. Examples include pulse oximeters and blood pressure cuffs. They can be reused as long as they undergo some form of disinfection.

The contamination of surfaces and cleanliness practices in the home

Dental infection control encompasses so much more than dental instruments. Any dental office has two surfaces: housekeeping surfaces and clinical surfaces, according to the CDC. Clinical surfaces encompass drawer handles, chairs, or any other surface that the dentist will touch while tending to your dental needs. If clinical surfaces are not covered up, then they should be cleaned following each workday. Housekeeping surfaces include sinks and floors and they should be kept clean throughout the day.
Like any other business, a dental practice should train its staff on cleanliness and safety as this is required by the government. We ensure top levels of safety and cleanliness at our practice to make sure that our patients and personnel are safe. Contact us today to schedule your visit.

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The surgical specialty of oral and maxillofacial surgery requires up to six additional years of hospital based surgical and anesthesia training beyond dental school.
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