Dentists use a variety of equipment, instruments and supplies in their practice. Some use special instruments depending on their area of specialization but there are certain basic tools and gear that all dentists rely on such as scalpels, needles, burs, mandrels, and blades. To protect themselves from infection and debris during dental procedures, they use masks bibs, disposable gloves, face shields and safety glasses.
Here is a list of the most essential equipment and instruments in a dentist’s clinic:
• The dentist’s mouth mirror is a critical instrument with which the insides of the patient’s mouth can be seen from different angles. This mirror can not only enable indirect vision, but also reflects light and magnifies the part of the mouth the dentist wants to look at closely. These mirrors can be reusable or disposable and single or double sided.
• The handheld sickle or angled probe enables the dentist check the teeth for cavities, fissures and problems with bridges and crowns. There are different types of probes to check various problems.
• Tweezers are useful in inserting or removing various objects in or out of the mouth. Tweezers are also available with a locking device to avoid dropping the object.
• During a dental procedure, excess saliva and moisture in the patient’s mouth is removed using a disposable saliva ejector which works by suctioning out the saliva from the mouth.
• Cotton rolls are also used to absorb any excess blood, saliva or other dental material that has to be removed after the procedure.
• For major dental procedures that involve pain, syringes and disposable needles are used to administer anaesthesia.
• When a particular tooth or part of the mouth has to be separated for treatment, a rubber dam is used for better visibility while safeguarding the patient’s airway.
• Almost every dentist’s clinic as X-Ray equipment to X-Ray the patient’s teeth and the radiograph film becomes a part of their medical dental records for reference during treatment. This film comes in a variety of sizes and shapes based on the tooth or the part of the mouth to be filmed.
• Dental Burs are used in repair work such as cavity filling, fixing a chip or other treatment where smoothing or polishing the tooth is involved. In addition, dental burs are also used in tooth restoration work where tooth tissue must be removed. They are available in different forms and sizes based on their function and are used with dental hand pieces and drills.
• Medical grade disposable gloves made of latex are an integral part of the medical professional for hygiene purposes and to avoid exposure to cuts and lacerations. They are used while examining the patient and usually single-use. Dentists take care to see that a new pair is used for each patient and trashed after used. The non-sterile variety is used for examinations while sterile gloves are used while performing surgery.
• A wide range of surgical blades and scalpels are used by dentists to perform their procedures. Both scalpels and scalpel blades are used to treat and drain tooth infections, remove impacted molars or cutting to access an operation site. These instruments must always be of excellent quality.