Autoclave is the unsung hero of a dental clinic.
The importance of having a reliable and working dental autoclave cannot be undermined and it is an indispensable part of every dental practice today.
Importance of autoclaves
The primary goal to sterilize dental instruments is to prevent the spread of infection from one patient to another. By sterilizing every dental instrument properly, the risk of infection is dramatically reduced.
The bacteria and other microbes on dental instruments cannot be decontaminated by just using water, detergent and a brush.
Autoclaving dental handpieces
Dental practices may be hesitant to autoclave handpieces after each use as heavy sterilization may ruin the handpiece itself, especially the sheath and turbine.
Since these tools are expensive, many practices do not sterilize them after every patient. However, if these handpieces undergo regular cleaning and maintenance then their lifespan can be increased.
Checking the accuracy of your steam autoclave
It is important to regularly use a helix test to judge the accuracy of your steam autoclave. The test would confirm if the tools placed in the chamber of the autoclave are fully sterilized. MES also recommends keeping a track record of the Helix tests performed on file.