Our dental office is state of the art when it comes to infection control. You may notice that a patient will leave and we may not bring you back for your appointment immediately. The reason is it takes time to properly disinfect and clear the dental operatory. The following are some of the steps used after a patient visit:
1. All single use items are disposed. This includes any paper products, vacuums, barriers, air water syringes, etc. Water lines are flushed.
2. The tray with the instruments is taken back to the sterilization area. All instruments are ultrasonically cleaned, rinsed and then sealed in autoclave bags for the sterilization process.
3. All handpieces and instruments are autoclaved. There are no exceptions. The bags have dye markers to verify sterilization.
4. The instruments in the autoclave bags are placed in the autoclave, which is steam sterilizer. It has a automatic sterilization cycle.
5. Sterile bagged instruments are placed on setup trays and not opened until your appointment.
6. The autoclaves are tested weekly by a independent biological monitoring service, as required by state law. A copy of a report is on the following page.
7. The chairs, countertops, lights, hoses, x-ray machines are wiped with a one-step disinfectant-cleaner-decontaminant that kills pathogens in one minute.
8. Barrier covers (one use adhesive plastic) are placed on light handles, chair buttons, x-ray buttons.
9. Just before your appointment the water lines are flushed once again. The water is treated with a biofilm tablet to ensure clean water in all of our lines.
10. The office takes a infection control class routinely in conjunction with our license renewals.
11. We have two Midmark MK2 Automatic Autoclaves. This ensures there is no break in the sterilization cycle if one autoclave needs repairs.