Dentaltown November 2017 - 46

message board

ultrasonics is akin to not using digital radiography at this point.
Here's a review of the literature from 2012 that concludes ultrasonic therapy is equivalent
to hand scaling, but superior in terms of time management: jdsor.com/2012-ISSUE-4/A3.pdf
Personally, I'm a big proponent of using ultrasonics, with only one or two patients a month
with no tolerance for the sound, not the sensation. Any child with calculus even prefers the
ultrasonic to the force and pressure of hand scaling. This is speaking from over 20 years' experience with them.
Instrument selection is key here: Be sure that your hygienist has the super thin left and right
sets of ultrasonic tips-they can get everywhere-the thick universal tips are only good for
the heavy stuff. Without good tools, I agree that ultrasonics can be annoying to patients, but
overwhelmingly patients have told me "this is so much better than all the scraping."
Hand scaling is still part of the regimen, it's just definitive, more like exploring than every
stroke being a scrape stroke. ■
6/27/2017

jbdent
Member Since: 07/13/04
Post: 20 of 43

My hygienists are like ninja warriors with their Cavitrons. There is no way I could run my
PPO mill efficiently without them and patients appreciate less time in the chair. To the original
OP do you use only hand files and no rotary for endo? ■
6/27/2017

ricklin
Member Since: 08/19/04
Post: 21 of 43

A wee bit of history, just because. The original ultrasonic scaler was developed for the military.
I think they go as far back as the 1920s. Those first units were monsters, I think they even had
wheels. Developed for those troops who had never been introduced to a toothbrush. True story. ■
6/27/2017

frontofficerocks
Member Since: 11/04/15
Post: 22 of 43

I will address the "nonclinical" side of this. As an OM myself, I would suggest asking the
doctor what the preferred method is, and then speak with the hygienist about the doctor's expectations. If the doctor prefers the ultrasonic be used during a hygiene appointment, the hygienist
should use it. As the OM, you are the "go between" and you need to make sure the hygienist is
on board with how the doctor wants patients treated. If the hygienist refuses or argues about it,
maybe it is time to find a more compliant team member.
I would also include some wording in your clinical policy manual that addresses this issue.
That way, moving forward, your hygiene department is clear on the treatment protocols for the
practice. Good luck! ■
6/27/2017

Michael1
Member Since: 12/29/16
Post: 29 of 43

As the original poster, I tried to make it a short story but it is obvious more information is
needed. The reason I asked for opinions here is because some of our dentists came to me with
concerns about the quality of our OH cleaning. In one case a dentist had to clean calculus off
a tooth so they could do the filling and this was straight after a scale and clean. After speaking
with the OH (who is quite new with us) she told me she never uses the ultrasonic and does not
want to.
I then came to this place and got some great advice (as a nonclinician I needed to inform
myself before taking it to the dentists) which I took to the practice principal dentist and after
that discussion it was decided to implement the plan I posted.
None of the dentists are prepared to face up to the OH so it is quite rightly my job to do it.
Thanks again. ■
6/27/2017

46

NOVEMBER 2017 // dentaltown.com


http://www.jdsor.com/2012-ISSUE-4/A3.pdf http://www.dentaltown.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Dentaltown November 2017

Dentaltown November 2017 - Intro
Dentaltown November 2017 - Cover1
Dentaltown November 2017 - Cover2
Dentaltown November 2017 - 1
Dentaltown November 2017 - 2
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