Sterilization of Dental Equipment
The times are trying enough without having to worry about a visit to the dentist. There is much talk about the transmission of disease in any given medical environment. Well, we're here to say dentistry in our practice still is a safe and healthful experience. And it's not just a matter of trust.
It took the AIDS epidemic to bring it to the public eye. But we've been guarding against it at our dental office since the day we opened our doors.
I'm talking about communicable disease. AIDS is the one you hear most about, but there are others. A quiet new killer (HCV, hepatitis C virus) currently infects about four million Americans who will never be able to rid themselves of it. Here at the office we're also aware that hepatitis B, tuberculosis, influenza-even the common cold-are communicable. The good news is that the same strict standards of asepsis (cleanliness) we use against one disease also defend us against all the others.
You may not be aware of all we do to ensure your protection from cross-communicated viruses. In fact, it's a large part of our day, and we're committed to the task.
We use disposable items wherever we can. Every surface in the operatory is secured against airborne bacteria with physical barriers. Our sterilization procedures are complex, monitored by an outside agency, and, not incidentally, much more than OSHA, the American Dental Association, the Centers for Disease Control, and local agencies require.
Metal instruments are cleansed in an ultrasonic bath before autoclaving in chemical pressurized heat. Handpieces, for instance (you know them as drills), take an hour's preparation-heat-treated then cooled-for each patient. We disinfect everything in sight.
All this costs, but it's worth it.
We wouldn't be here if we didn't care about you, your health, and your good looks. We want you to feel comfortable, all the time. Please ask about our sterilization program and we'll be more than happy to show you what we're doing.
You know we care about open communication in our dental office. This letter is another way we hope to show it.
DR. GARY SIGAFOOS