A Clear Guide to Dental Waste Management
With the many patient coming in out of a dental office, it becomes quite a busy place. X-rays, cleaning, and filling of root canals and crowns are some of the activities that takes place here. The main challenge comes in disposing all the hazardous wastes. It is important to dispose these harmful wastes properly to keep the patients safe and the atmosphere clean. The following are a number of dental waste management tips you should know of.
A major toxic threat when it comes to dental wastes are the amalgams. This is following the high amount of mercury they contain. All wastes with high mercury levels should be put into a recycler. The work surface should have containment to avoid the mercury spills from entering the sewer. Generally, amalgam should not be disposed in the main trash bin. The best to handle dental wastes containing mercury is putting them together following a safety procedure and storing them in a tightly closed container to be used in future. Dentist are supposed to use filters to prevent the amalgam particles from spilling out in the sewer. Many health facilities are now using the amalgam separator technology. According to a number of scientific tests these amalgam removal methods have been confirmed to be highly efficient.
There is high levels of silver in dental X-ray wastes. For this reasons, they should not be flashed down the drain. Instead, the silver can be salvaged in an in-house recovery unit. Another alternative is to have these wastes collected by a biomedical disposer. These days, most practices are avoiding the frustrations that come with dental x-ray wastes disposal and are now using the digital imaging equipment.
Some dental wastes also contain high lead levels. The X-ray packets contain leachable toxins that when exposed to the landfills, can largely affect ground water and soil. Due to this, the waste way to handle these wastes is to find a hazardous waste disposal service that is licensed to collect and dispose them accordingly. The blood-soaked gauze are other types of dental wastes that should be managed properly. They should be packed in a red disposal plastic bag. It is important for the used disposal bags to have universal hazard indication.
The sharp dental wastes should be stored in properly labelled containers which are also puncture resistant. The person using the sharps should clearly see the containers and even reach them. They should also not be kept in places where there is high traffic, under a sink or next to light switches. Since things like disinfectants, sterilizing agents and chemicals are also treated as harmful wastes because they can also have a bad effect on the environment. For the proper management of dental wastes in the dental office, you can request your biomedical waste provider to guide you.