Sterilizer Monitoring In the Dental Office
This detailed document includes: hand hygiene, personal protective equipment, allergy to contact dermatitis/latex, disinfection/sterilization, prevention of environmental diseases, waterlines/biofilms, and special dental considerations such as handpieces, radiographs, and laboratory procedures. If you are looking for more tips, check out Phoenix Cosmetic Dentist.
The CDC’s Dental Settings Recommendations for Infection Prevention are evidence-based and well established. Sterilization of dental instruments is one of the areas which must be stressed in dental offices. Sterilizer inspection is an integral part of the infection prevention program alongside the proper sterilization of equipment and products.
Many variables can cause sterilization to fail—from easily remedied procedural mistakes, such as overloading, to technical issues that can take a sterilizer out of operation before repairs can be made. Since effective sterilization may be influenced by this variety of variables, the CDC and the American Dental Association advise dentists to periodically evaluate the efficiency of their in-office sterilizers.
Using both chemical and biological markers, sterilization should be controlled. For each instrument load, chemical indicators, such as indicator tapes, must be used. A change in the color of these markers reveals exposure to the correct conditions of sterilization.
Failure to adjust the color indicator means that it was not subjected to the right setting for sterilization (e.g., proper pressure or temperature). The instrument load should, in such situations, be re-sterilized. For some forms of sterilizers, indicator tapes are made especially for (i.e., tapes for steam sterilizers cannot be used to test chemical vapor sterilizers). Chemical indicators should not replace biological indicators, as the microbial killing power of the sterilization process can be measured only by a biological indicator consisting of bacterial endospores.