What most concern us, healthcare provider and the patient is the spread of disease (eg. HIV, Hepatitis B) during treatment. It can be spread from patient to patient or from patient to the healthcare provider. Therefore, this spread of disease has to be stopped or minimized. No one wants to get a disease when he just come to clinic for a dental checkup.
There are various way to control infection:
- Wearing gloves (new gloves of every patient), face mask, eye shields, gown
- Use only sterilized instruments which are pouched to prevent exposure before used
- Use more disposable material such as paper cup, bib, wrapping paper and saliva suction tip
- Single use only for any sharp objects such as needle, blade, and suture material
- Using disinfectant to disinfect surfaces or handles after every patient.
All these infection control protocol has already been practiced in our clinic to prevent infection spread.
Dental instruments which are non-disposable has to be cleaned, ultrasonic bathed, dried and pouched (put into a bag) before sterilizing.
The dental instruments are ultrasonic cleaned
We pouched our instruments before sterilizing. After sterilization the pouched instrument are kept in the drawer (Below)
Most dental clinic use autoclave unit to sterilize their instruments. Autoclave unit uses highly pressurized stream to penetrated deep into the pouches to kill microorganism (including virus, bacteria or spore).
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.
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