After each patient, all areas of the treatment room within 6 feet of the patient’s mouth are wiped down with Cavicide which kills bacteria, fungus, and viruses.
Metal instruments are first first cleaned ultrasonically to release any debris. They are then sealed in pouches and autoclaved using high pressure and high temperature steam to kill any bacteria or harmful organisms. The instruments go through a drying cycle to prevent corrosion. Each pouch has an indicator to signify it was exposed to the proper temperature to sterilize the instruments inside.
The autoclaves are tested weekly using Spore Test envelopes that are sent off to verify that the process has destroyed the organisms. Reports are returned certifying that the machine has passed the test. Additionally the autoclaves are inspected on a monthly basis by qualified technicians from Patterson Dental Company.
Items used in patient treatment which will not withstand the heat of the autoclave are cold-sterilized in a solution of hydrogen peroxide and phosphoric acid for 24 hours then rinsed and dried before being used again. The cold-sterilization solution is reusable for 21 days according to the manufacturer. However, we replace the solution after 14 days to assure its efficacy.
Disposable instruments, materials and supplies are discarded and NEVER reused.