To remove tooth decay, some dentists use air abrasion, which is a practical substitute for drills.
What is the Air Abrasion Technique?
During the air abrasion process, a tool that functions like a small sandblaster literally sprays away decay. A thin particle stream is pointed at the decayed or stained areas of a tooth. These particles consist of aluminum oxide, silica, or a baking soda mixture. They are directed toward the surface of the tooth either by gas or compressed air running through a handheld dental accessory. Decay on the surface of the tooth is eliminated once touched by the particle stream and sucked through a fine vacuum tube.
How Safe is Air Abrasion?
The only preparations necessary prior to the use of air abrasion are protective goggles to protect the patient’s eyes from any backlash of the spray. A rubber dam or protective resin of some sort should also be worn around the teeth to safeguard sections of the mouth that aren’t being treated. The suctioning prevents the patient from inhaling or ingesting any of the particles into the lungs.
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