Infection control is of utmost importance to us and preventative measures for cross contamination are taken very seriously. Our patients should feel confident in knowing that our office takes all the necessary precautions to keep everyone healthy. Fry Orthodontic Specialists follows OSHA guidelines and standards to ensure the safety of our patients, as well as ourselves. In 2003, the CDC established infection control guidelines for dental offices, including rules for hand hygiene and sterilization of dental instruments. All sterilized utensils should be freed of all micro-organisms in either vegetative or spore states. There are various ways of sterilization that offices can use to make sure that is achieved.
Any instrument that we use during your visit is either disposed of after use, chemically sterilized, or disinfected and then sterilized in an autoclave (steam heated sterilization machine). These machines are the most popular and are considered the ‘gold standard’ for sterilization procedures in dental offices. The instruments that go into the autoclave are sealed in packages marked with a special process indicator that changes color when the steam has reached a certain temperature. This lets us know that the instruments are sterilized and ready for use. Our autoclaves are tested monthly by an outside agency to ensure they are functioning properly. Also, all unused equipment is covered and each ‘station’ is disinfected between each patient to prevent any cross contamination.
We have mandatory state inspections at least twice a year, and Fry Orthodontic Specialists surpasses governmental requirements regarding the sterilization of instruments throughout our dental office. Rest assured that we strive to provide the best care and the safest environment for each and every one of our patients. “Prevention is better than a cure”-words of wisdom from a proverb… ironically well suited for the current sterilization uproar. -Lindi