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Instrument Sharpening: A Necessary But Often Forgotten Task

There are many tasks on the daily to-do list for a dental hygienist. Having sharp instruments should be on the top of that list; yet, sharpening is often the last thing that happens when there is an opening on the schedule.

There are many reasons to work with sharp instruments: reduced trauma on the tooth surface, reduced hand fatigue, a decrease in the number of working strokes needed, reduced chance of the tooth slipping off with the instrument, reduced chance to burnish calculus and the list goes on.

It is often said that dental hygienist do not have the time, or that it takes too much time, to do this frequently; however, it time being saved when you have to make more working strokes to accomplish the task, or the hand gets tired and overworked, or the patient complains about the heavy-handed hygienist?

Let's assume you have jumped on board with finding the few minutes it takes to sharpen instruments. Yes, a few minutes - if you have some of these points in mind to help decrease the amount of time it can take to sharpen your instruments.

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