I recently cracked my tooth No. 15 and was at my dentist to have a temporary crown placed. To keep myself entertained, I asked her what it’s like to spend most of her days working in such a dark, cramped space, taking care of relatively small body parts. The question occurred to me when I saw the applicators she was using to apply various materials in preparation for the provisional. She described it as requiring calm and patience, and a steady hand.
When I asked about the applicators, she explained that the long handles and bendable necks make it possible for her to get into hard-to-reach areas at odd angles. She also said that, even after being in practice for over 20 years, she’s still fascinated by all of the tools of the dental trade and how grateful she is for whoever conceived of each and every one of them. Then, because I’m a dental geek, I asked her what makes a good applicator (to me, they just look like high-tech Q-Tips). This is what she said are the four things she wants from dental applicators:
1. The handle has to be long enough to reach in the “way back” and it has to give me tactile control…I want to be able to “feel” what I’m doing.
2. The neck should bend and then stay in the position I want without bouncing back or breaking.
3. The applicators I use come with a lot of different head types and sizes for placing all of the different materials I work with, such as sealants, cavity liners, etchants, and bonding agents.
4. They shouldn’t leave any lint behind, and you want them to hold the material without absorbing it or dripping.
Maybe you’ve found the applicators that meet all of your must-haves, but maybe you’d like to see some other options. Check out all of the applicators we list here.