Recently, I’ve been asked a lot of questions about how to sterilize dental instruments at home. This is because many people are now using homemade toothbrushes and other items that need to be cleaned regularly, but they do not know the best way to clean them. So, in this article, we will look into some ways you can use to sterilize your personal hygiene products, such as toothbrushes or mouthwashes.
The Critical Methods on How To Sterilize Dental Instruments at Home
Below are the common methods of sterilization and the steps that each entails:
What you need to sterilize dental instruments?
- Dental instruments container with lid
- Sanitizing solution
- Drying rack
- Personal protective equipment- gloves, face mask, goggles, apron
Follow these steps to sterilize Dental Instruments:
Step I: Cleaning and fitting Your Hygiene Products
The first step involves washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water before starting the procedure. Make sure that you clean both sides of your fingers and wrists too. After rinsing, dry your hands by rubbing them together vigorously until no moisture remains. Then apply moisturizer to keep your skin soft and supple.
Next, put on your gloves first, followed by your mask, goggles, and finally, your apron.
Step II: Determine the sterilization method
Now that we’ve prepared our disinfectant solutions, it’s time to determine how best to sterilize your dental instruments.
Using steam autoclaves
Steam autoclaves are ideal for sterilizing small items like toothbrushes and tongue scrapers. They come equipped with racks where you can store these objects while they undergo the sterilization process. Steam autoclaves have been around for decades now and are considered safe because they do not emit harmful gases. However, make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions when operating one. Also, note that steam autoclaves cannot be operated without electricity, so ensure a power supply is available.
Using pacifier sterilizer
Pacifiers are explicitly designed for sterilizing large medical devices such as endoscopes or surgical knives. However, they can be used for personal dental instruments as long as their size does not exceed 1 inch. Pacifiers work by circulating hot air through an enclosed chamber which then heats the surrounding area. This causes the temperature inside the chamber to rise above 100 degrees Fahrenheit within seconds. The heated air then travels outwards from the chamber and comes into contact with all surfaces, including those of your dental instruments. Once this happens, the surface will become sterile.
Chemical disinfectants are also known as “chemical cleaners.” These products contain chemicals that kill bacteria to prevent them from spreading diseases. Most commonly found among dentists are sodium hypochlorite and glutaraldehyde. Bleach works very effectively against most types of microorganisms but has limited effectiveness against viruses. Glutaraldehyde is effective against both bacteria and viruses. It should be noted, though, that neither product kills spores. Therefore, even after being properly cleaned and disinfected, spore-forming organisms may remain on your dental instruments.
High-temperature heat is another way to sterilize your dental equipment. You would need to place your dental instruments directly over a flame source until they reach the desired temperature. For example, you might want to set your mouth mirror over a gas stove burner for about 30 minutes. Make sure that you use only low flames since higher temperatures could damage your dental instruments.
Once you know what type of sterilization method you’d prefer to use, let’s move onto.
Step III: Perform the procedure
You’ll start by cleaning your dental tools first before proceeding to the actual sterilization process. From the above discussed methods, choose the most appropriate one for your needs.
If you’re looking forward to keeping your dental instruments cleaner longer, there are certain things you can do to help ensure that they stay germ-free for much more extended periods.
• Always wash your hands before touching any part of your body. Wash your hands well enough so that no traces of soap remains.
• Avoid sharing utensils like toothbrushes, razors, etc., between family members. This prevents cross-contamination, which means that one person’s germs get transferred to others’ mouths.
• Use disposable gloves while performing oral procedures such as brushing or flossing. Disposable gloves protect your skin from getting infected. They also make it easier for you to avoid contaminating yourself.
Never forget to dispose of used items once their purpose has been fulfilled. Never throw these materials out without proper disposal methods. Doing this not only endangers our environment but also puts us all at risk of contracting various infections.
Sterilizing your dental instruments is essential if you wish to prevent spreading diseases through your mouth. There are many ways to achieve this goal. However, choosing the right technique depends entirely upon your preference and budget. The best thing to remember is that whatever method you choose should be safe and effective. Be sure to follow instructions carefully and always use caution whenever working around sharp objects.