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Infection Control—Do It for Your Patients, Do It for Yourself

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Can you ever talk too much about infection control? I guess there might be some people who tire of it, but as someone who spends at a least a little time each year in a dental patient chair, I hope infection control (or, in the modern parlance, infection prevention) is always top of mind for everyone in the dental practice—from the front office staff to everyone on the clinical side.

So, with that in mind, here’s a little friendly reminder for all of you out there taking care of your community’s oral health:

  • Take Action to Stay Healthy: Obtaining recommended immunizations against hepatitis B, tetanus and the flu virus are examples of taking action to stay healthy, especially if an exposure injury occurs while handling dental handpieces.
  • Avoid Contact with Blood and Body Fluids: Handpieces regularly contact saliva and occasionally blood during dental treatment. CDC’s infection control recommendations focus on preventing direct contact with these and other potentially infectious materials.
  • Limit the Spread of Blood and Body Fluid Contamination: In addition to preventing direct contact, limiting the spread of blood and body fluids is key to preventing disease transmission.
  • Make Objects Safe for Use: Proper cleaning, disinfection and sterilization ensure that patient care items are not only safe for dental personnel to handle, but also for use on subsequent patients.

For that last bit about making objects safe for use, you might want to take a look at this article on dental handpiece care and processing. And check out the Midwest Automate Handpiece Maintenance System from .

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