As a dental professional, it is essential to prioritize the safety of both the patients and the staff. One of the key ways to ensure safety is using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). PPE includes various equipment such as gloves, masks, face shields, and gowns, providing a barrier between the dental professional and the patient. This article will discuss the importance of PPE in dental practice, the different types of PPE, and the proper use and disposal of PPE.
Importance of PPE in Dental Practice
The dental practice involves close contact with patients’ bodily fluids, including saliva, blood, and respiratory secretions. These fluids may contain infectious microorganisms that pose a risk of infection to dental professionals. PPE acts as a barrier that prevents the transmission of these microorganisms between the patient and the dental professional.
The use of PPE in dental practice is crucial in preventing the spread of infectious diseases such as COVID-19, influenza, and hepatitis B and C. Dental professionals are at a higher risk of contracting these infections due to the nature of their work. PPE reduces the risk of exposure to these infectious diseases, protecting the dental professional and the patient.
Types of PPE in Dental Practice
The following are the types of PPE used in dental practice:
Gloves are the most commonly used PPE in dental practice. They provide a barrier between the dental professional’s hands and the patient’s bodily fluids. Gloves should be changed between patients and when they become damaged. It is essential to use gloves that are appropriate for the procedure being performed.
They protect the dental professional’s mouth and nose from inhaling infectious droplets the patient produces during procedures. Masks should be changed between patients and when they become wet. It is crucial to use masks that are appropriate for the procedure being performed.
Face shields protect the dental professional’s face from splashes of bodily fluids during procedures. They should be used in conjunction with masks for added protection. Face shields should be cleaned and disinfected between patients.
Gowns provide full-body coverage and protect dental professionals’ clothing from bodily fluids during procedures. They should be changed between patients and when they become wet or soiled.
Eye protection such as safety glasses or goggles protects the dental professional’s eyes from splashes of bodily fluids during procedures. They should be cleaned and disinfected between patients.
Proper Use and Disposal of PPE
Proper use and disposal of PPE are crucial in preventing the spread of infectious diseases. Dental professionals must follow the following guidelines:
- Put on PPE before entering the patient’s treatment area.
- Remove jewelry, watches, and other items that may interfere with the proper use of PPE.
- Don PPE in the following order: gown, mask or respirator, goggles or face shield, and gloves.
- Perform hand hygiene before donning and after doffing PPE.
- Do not touch the front of the mask or face shield during use.
- Change gloves between patients and when they become damaged.
- Change masks between patients and when they become wet.
- Change gowns between patients and when they become wet or soiled.
- Remove PPE in the following order: gloves, gown, eye protection, mask, or respirator.
- Perform hand hygiene after doffing PPE.
- Dispose of PPE in the appropriate waste container.
Find the Best Equipment for Your Dental Practice
PPE is an essential part of dental practice that helps prevent the transmission of infectious diseases between patients and dental professionals. It is crucial to use the appropriate PPE for each procedure and to follow proper use and disposal guidelines. Dental professionals must prioritize safety by wearing PPE, performing proper hand hygiene, and disposing of PPE correctly. Also, they must ensure that their equipment and supplies meet the highest safety and quality standards. Dental Assets is the best place to find dental equipment and supplies, offering a wide range of products from reputable brands at competitive prices. Visit Dental Assets today.