Disinfection & Sterilization in Denture Clinics
What you need to know before your next visit.
Denturists understand that with the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, patients may be worried and more sensitive to the methods used in denture clinics to ensure their safety. Infection control procedures reduce the risk of illness and infection. Its imperative that a denture clinic use superior disinfection techniques.
A dental office that follows standard safety procedures makes sure that whatever instruments or tools they use in your mouth are sterilized and have not been used on another patient prior to your dental treatment.
At Brookswood Denture Clinic, the health and safety of our patients has always been a primary concern. The process of keeping instruments clean and disposing of potential infection sources is known as dental sterilization. We use hospital level sterilization and disinfection procedures, including the use of an autoclave, to eliminate all traces of bacteria and viruses from dental instruments and hard surfaces to prevent the potential spread of pathogens. We achieve this high level of sterilization and disinfection by following the asepsis regulations set out by the College of Denturists of British Columbia.
What is the difference between Disinfection & Sterilization?
Disinfection and Sterilization are both decontamination processes. Disinfection is the process of eliminating or reducing harmful microorganisms from inanimate objects and surfaces, and Sterilization is the process of killing all microorganisms. A dental office that maintains good infection control procedures reduces the risk of illness and infection in its patients.
Why is Dental Sterilization Important?
Sterilization procedures are the front line of defense against infections in dental offices. A lack of proper sterilization and disinfection protocols exposes people to many different illnesses, not just Covid-19. Every dental appointment involves risk. Dental instruments come into contact with the inside of mouths all the time, therefore it is possible for infection to occur if pathogens are transferred between patients. Unfortunately, most people don’t know that they have an illness until they have already been contagious for several days. For this reason, dental offices spend thousands of dollars on sterilization equipment and disinfection products to protect their staff and patients from cross-contamination of pathogens on dental instruments and hard surfaces.
Dental Instrument Categories
Some dental instruments are disposable and can be thrown out immediately after use and others require reuse and thus need regular sterilization. Because some dental instruments come into contact with the mouth its imperative that protocols are in place to ensure that germs from one person’s mouth do not transfer to another’s.
Dental instruments are broken into three categories – Critical (exposed to blood and bone), Semi-Critical (contact with oral tissue) and Non-Critical (contact with intact skin). In a denture clinic setting, semi-critical and noncritical dental instruments are used due to the nature of the profession.
The methods we use to ensure the removal of viruses and bacterial from surfaces and instruments are as follows:
- All dental instruments are autoclaved – impression trays, mouth mirrors, small hand tools and cutting burs are fully sterilized in a high heat pressure chamber to completely eliminate all bacteria and viruses. An autoclave is essential in all dental offices and an important question to ask before seeking dental services.
- Surface decontamination with hospital grade disinfectants are used on dental appliances, dental chairs, dental lights, counter tops, mixing bowls, doorknobs and other hard surfaces before and after each patient appointment.
- Proper personal protective equipment such as masks, face shields, and gloves are worn by staff to ensure that the spread of potential pathogens is reduced.
At Brookswood Denture Clinic we strive to make every patient feel comfortable and secure that their well being is held in the highest regard. We make every attempt to protect our patients from the potential spread of pathogens by using the highest level of sterilization & disinfection techniques that are available to us.
There will be further changes made to our protocols as the regulations regarding the prevention of Covid-19 are developed by the provincial health authority and the College of Denturists of BC. You can rest assured that Brookswood Denture Clinic will continue to take every possible precaution to ensure your health and safety and that of our staff.
To find out about infection control at Brookswood Denture Clinic visit :
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For more information about complete or partial dentures or how to care for your dentures, please call 604-530-9936 or visit www.yourdenture.com to set up an appointment for a complimentary consultation.
Darren Sailer and Colin Harty, Denturists, are BPS trained and Certified SEMCD clinicians at Brookswood Denture Clinic – Denture and Implant Solutions.