Is The Dental Office A Safe Place To Be Treated?

Over the past several years there has been a great deal of concern over safety in the dental office. In our office we take meticulous care to protect our patients.

All of our instruments, including dental drills , are ultrasonically cleansed and sterilized after each use with an autoclave (steam sterilizer). Our autoclave is tested on a regular basis by the oral pathology department of Emory University to insure its effectiveness. Instruments are stored in sterilizer bags so they are not exposed to contaminants when not in use. Parts of the dental treatment room which cannot be placed in a sterilizing machine, such as the chair, light, x-ray machine, and counter tops, are freshly covered for each patient with a plastic barrier after disinfection with a solution approved by the American Dental Association. Our staff always use: masks, gloves, and eye wear as an added precaution.

Many people are also concerned with radiation exposure from dental radiographs (x-rays). Although the dose of radiation needed to expose today's high speed films is minimal, certain precautions are necessary. A lead apron should be worn whenever possible. In our office the x-ray machines are calibrated on a regular basis so our patients do not receive unnecessary radiation. With proper precautions dental radiographs are of great benefit and little if any risk to the patient.

You and your family should feel comfortable with the safety techniques employed at your dentist's office. There is nothing wrong with asking about the measures taken to protect you from potential hazards. We would be happy to review with you our office protocol for infection control.