Office Safety

Safety Program - Protecting our patients and staff:

At the Elm Tree Clinic, top priority is placed on providing you, the patient, and our team with a safe, healthy and pleasant working environment.

Air Filter and Exchange System: Our entire office is equipped with a high volume air exchange system and HEPA filter which replaces the air every hour, filtering out any particles over 1 micron in size. This assures constant clean fresh air supply, and removes chemicals, bacteria, mercury vapour, etc. We have an added extra-powerful suction unit to catch particles used in certain procedures.

Instrument Sterilization and Infection Control:

All our dental instruments are heat, steam, and pressure sterilized in a state-of-the-art Statim autoclave after each use. Our sterilizer is tested on a regular basis to ensure that it is operating properly.

Surface Disinfection:

All exposed horizontal surfaces in the operatory are disinfected between each patient, using environmentally friendly, biodegradable but highly effective Micrylium (R) Green products (Note: Link will open in a new window). These are the lowest toxicity to staff and paitents, but very effective against bacteria and viruses.
We also use safe peroxide-based surface disinfectants.

Surface barrier protection:

You will notice that we have disposable plastic wrap on all contact surfaces which are changed between patients, and our cupboards, drawers and taps are all hands-free operated to avoid contamination. Waterlines in the operatory are on a sealed system, and we run sterile ozonated water. They are sterilized every week with ozone, and tested regularly to ensure they contain no bacterial colony-forming units.

Digital X-Rays and Radiation Safety

Our all-digital x-ray units and second-generation digital sensors require very little radiation to be emitted.  Instead of film and chemicals, a tiny digital sensor is used, which sends the image directly to the computer. The x-ray exposure is about one quarter that of F-speed film or 90% less than the Ultraspeed film used in the early 1990s.  There are no hazardous chemicals to send for recycling with the digital system.
New for 2012- We use a rectangular collimator- a simple device that cuts down xray scatter exposure by a further 75% but is not commonly used as it requires greater accuracy.

New for 2006, we now have a digital Panoramic X-ray unit too. This lets us get a general view of the whole mouth with one lower exposure x-ray. Combine this with the use of a lead apron and thyroid collar, and the exposure to radiation when taking only necessary radiographs is minimal. We take only the minimal number of x-rays that are required for an accurate diagnosis and treatment. Our equipment is tested on a regular basis. Our operatory walls and cabinets are lead-lined to prevent any unnecessary x-ray exposure to patients and staff.

Mercury Reduction :

When silver-mercury amalgam fillings are removed, mercury particles and vapours can be released. We take precautions to protect our patients and ourselves.
We use silicone dam isolation, auxiliary suction, copious water flow, HEPA filter and air exchange, We also have oxygen via nose mask for the patients.
We have state-of-the-art mercury capture systems in our suction, so it does not leach into the environment.