I bet you wouldn’t eat your dinner off the floor, so it’s safe to say you don’t want the dentist sticking things in your mouth if they’re not clean. How do you know if the dentist looks after their surgery and all the equipment properly? We’re going to look at things you can watch out for from now on just so you can rest easy knowing you won’t pick up any germs when you go to have your teeth looked at.
Pay attention to the office
You can usually tell if people are clean because of the way their home looks. If someone had a beautiful spacious living room with no mess lying on the floor you could safely say their kitchen would be clean too. If they had dirty plates and cigarette stubs lying on their living room floor you probably wouldn’t eat anything if they tried to serve you food. If the dentist makes sure their office is clean and tidy there is a good chance they also look after all their equipment correctly too.
Look at the instruments
Unless you’re the first patient of the day there have been others lying in the chair before you walk into the room. Can you imagine what would happen if the dentist used instruments on the last guy and stuck them into your mouth without sterilizing them first? You would have a random stranger’s germs and who knows what else stuck in your mouth. The instruments should be inside a sealed bag to prove they’ve been sterilized, although the dentist could have removed them prior to you walking in.
Keep an eye on the gloves
You don’t become a dentist without years of intense training which means they are really switched on individuals. It’s very unlikely they would wear the same gloves with two patients unless something was seriously wrong, so that is not what you should be worried about. You should be worried about them laying gloves on a dirty surface and putting them back on again. Each pair of gloves that goes into your mouth should come fresh from the glove dispenser.
Even though a dentist is highly skilled they’re only as good as the equipment they use. If their equipment doesn’t work you will probably suffer. A dentist can have an envelope of bacteria sent in the post and they will put it into their sterilization machine before sending it back to a third-party company. They will then get a certificate telling them their machine is serviceable and if you ask to see it you will know all their instruments are being sterilized properly.
Don’t stop asking questions
I know it’s hard to speak when you have a pair of hands sticking in your mouth for most of your visit, but if you have any questions the dentist will be happy to answer you. They would rather your mind was at ease instead of racing at a thousand miles per hour while you were having work done. Whenever you don’t like the feel of something you just need to open your mouth. Sometimes a little reassurance will make you feel a lot better and the dentist won’t charge you extra for it.
It’s a scary place
A lot of people are scared of the dentist for many reasons. It’s usually got to do with pain, sharp things, money, and uncomfortable feelings. If you’re also scared your health might be at risk there is no way you will want to go back. When you skip the dentist you end up with horrible teeth and your life gets thrown upside down. All of that can easily be avoided by eliminating as many reasons to be scared of the dentist as possible.
The author of this post, Alex Perkins, is an intern at Advanced Dental Artistry, a dental clinic renowned for dental porcelain veneers. Alex loves to play and watch rugby with his friends.