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How dentists ensure patient safety at their facilities

How dentists ensure patient safety at their facilities

How dentists ensure patient safety at their facilities

Going to the dentist’s office can be scary for many people. Ensuring these areas are safe and healthy can help alleviate various fears individuals might have. Here is what every respectable and trustworthy dental practice is implementing.

How dentists ensure patient safety at their facilities

Making sure they’re treating the right patient

For starters, it’s important for the dentist and the staff to check who they are treating. They should ask for the patient’s name a few times and perhaps ask for a form of identification. That way, there will be no mistakes and accidental procedures that were not asked for.

Several healthcare providers are even using touchless biometric patient identification platforms – RightPatient is one of them. This platform uses patient photos to identify the EHR. During registration, RightPatient takes a photo of the patient and attaches it to the patient’s EHR, basically “locking” it. Whenever the patient comes in, all they need to do is look at the camera – the platform runs a biometric search, and upon finding the match, provides the 

Checking their medical history

Once they’re sure they have the right patient, medical experts should also go through the individual’s medical history. Checking whether there are any allergies and certain medications that cannot be used is a necessity. Furthermore, if medical history is checked, the dentist should be able to decide what the best treatment for the procedure would be.

Ensuring they’re doing the right procedure

Before they start doing anything, it’s important for the dentist to also make sure they are preparing for the right procedure. By talking to the patient first, they will check whether they are pulling out a tooth, filling one in, or doing some whitening. Checking which part hurts and going over the patient’s needs will ensure everything goes smoothly and no wrong teeth will be pulled out by accident.

Preventing inhalation and swallowing of materials

During the procedure, the professional has to make sure the patient is not inhaling or swallowing any of the materials that are being used. When filling in a tooth or filing it down, it’s vital to instruct the patient then they need to spit and use a dental suction device that will get rid of moisture and different particles. There is also the risk of swallowing crowns and instruments, which is why dentists need to be careful.

Using a dental dam

When a dentist needs to isolate a certain tooth, they will use a dental dam. Moreover, a dam also provides more visibility for a dentist. This thin latex layer is put over an area of the mouth that’s not being examined to avoid direct contact between items. The dam is secured with a clamp and then the tooth they want to examine will be slid through a small hole for the best view.

Considering which instruments to use

For the best results, it’s also important to use the best dental equipment. In addition to purchasing the necessary tools, it’s also crucial to keep up with their cleaning and maintenance which will ensure everything goes according to plan. The staff at the practice needs to learn how to properly use and clean equipment so that the patients are reassured they’re in good hands.

Taking cleanliness seriously

Just like sterilizing the equipment is vital, so is cleaning the entire premises. No one wants their healthcare institution to be dirty and not maintained. With that in mind, the people working in the office need to keep their documents sorted properly and out of view, disinfect the surfaces and floors, maintain the furniture, and do anything else they can in order to keep the space spotless. There is also the option of hiring professional cleaners in order to have everything tidy.

Being careful with radiography

Experts also need to understand that being careful with radiography is also essential. For one, even though X-rays are used in low intensity, it’s still best to restrict exposure to radiation and be cautious.

Wearing protective gear

Both dentists and patients should be wearing protective gear. For example, protective eyewear prevents germs and fluids that fly out of the mouth from spreading.

Following safety standards

Finally, it’s important to note that every country has its own safety and health regulations that businesses have to follow. As they are inspected regularly, it’s vital for every dental practice to stick to these rules and keep potentially harmful chemicals and diseases at bay. Every employee has to be properly trained as well as keep up with all the latest updates in the field.

As you can see, there are various ways in which dental practices keep their spaces safe and healthy. If this was the reason why you might have been scared of the dentist, rest assured that it’s all properly handled.

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