At Chinook Smiles, as a Chinook Centre Family Dental Clinic, your dental health and safety are of utmost concern to us. In our practice, we are proud of our sterilization and infection control procedures. Today, more than ever, people have questions about the risk of infection when they visit a health care practitioner of any kind.
We are as concerned about our hygienic standards & sterilization procedures as you are and ensure that yours is a safe and stringently clean dental visit. It is our goal always to exceed the Alberta Dental Association and Canadian Dental Association safety and sterilization guidelines with hospital grade sterilization equipment.
Besides our hospital grade sterilization process, our dentists and hygienists wear gloves, masks and protective eyewear as a protective barrier. Anything that goes into the patient’s mouth is either used only once and disposed of, or it is sterilized in our state of the art sterilization lab.
Sterilization Processes We Use:
- Autoclave (pressurized steam): All dental instruments and handpieces (drills) are sterilized in a high-pressure steam autoclave after each use. This process is the standard of care. Our computerized autoclave warns us in the event of an incomplete sterilization cycle, and we have protocols in place to correct such issues immediately. As an added precaution, we also use an external biological indicator test to ensure that our autoclave is functioning properly and producing sterile instruments.
- Surface Decontamination: All surfaces including countertops, dental chairs, stools, light handles and control buttons are disinfected with chemical solutions before and after every patient. These solutions are not only formulated to eliminate infectious bacteria and viruses that could otherwise proliferate on these surfaces, but the chemicals themselves pose no health threat to our patients.
- Disposable Items: Many of the items we use today are discarded after a single use. These items include saliva ejectors, high-speed suction tips, drinking cups, rubber cleaning cups, patient bibs, tray covers, sterilization bags, mixing pads, mixing tips, anesthetic carpules, and needle tips, among others. Gloves and masks are also discarded after each use.
If you have any questions about any of our dental health and safety procedures, please do not hesitate to ask us at your next visit!