When visiting your dentist, do you ever wonder what those tools did? – Or when you walk into Your dentist’s office, the whirr of a drill or the sharp hook of a device you can’t even describe can send chills down your spine. Patients of all ages come to their regular dental checkups with a bit of fear in their eyes. By knowing what each tool does, you might be less anxious every time the dentist goes near your mouth. Here’s a brief guide to help you understand essential dental tools.
This harmless round mirror is used by dentists to reach the back of your mouth in order to see teeth that are hard to reach. It is also used to reflect light on a particular surface or soft tissue, allowing the dentist to better decide the best course of treatment for you. This makes it easier to find tooth decay or other potential oral problems that would otherwise go undetected. Second, it gives the dentist an easy way to move your tongue or push on the inside of your cheek without doing so with their hands.
Now the dental drill might be the most feared of all tools. The sound of it is enough to make someone very uncomfortable or even scared. However, you will not necessarily suffer pain when we use this tool. It’s the most effective way to remove tooth decay before filling a cavity. This electric drill spins at over 250,000 rpm while shooting water into your mouth. If the drill didn’t administer water, it would get hot enough to damage the tooth. Therefore, the amount of pain you suffer depends on the procedure rather than the use of this tool.
Scalers are the hooked instruments that your hygienist uses to scrape plaque and tartar off your teeth. Most patients who require scaling have more significant issues with periodontal disease, but everyone experiences some form of plaque buildup. When you eat or drink, tiny particles such as sugars and acids stick to your teeth, and bacteria forms. This harmful bacteria eventually cause tooth decay, and while brushing and flossing help remove most of this plaque, additional removal is sometimes required. It makes what many think is a very unpleasant scraping sound. While temporarily uncomfortable, you may quickly feel the difference between not having your teeth scaled compared to having them scaled!
Saliva Ejector or Suction Device
What’s that little vacuum that sucks up your spit during a treatment? That’s the saliva ejector, which dries your mouth so the dentist can better perform their work. When a dentist is exploring your mouth, they often need a dry surface. A suction device is a long tube attached to a vacuum that removes saliva from your mouth. You may hear some vacuum sounds and feel the ejector stick to your cheek or tongue, but it’s nothing that should startle you. During treatments that involve the use of water, you may be regularly instructed to close your mouth in order to help the device clear the accumulated water.
Local anesthesia is injected into your gum lines through a dental syringe. They’re a bit longer than a typical needle or syringe so the dentist can hit the correct spot when administering the anesthetic. You may feel a slight pinch at first, but that is about it. After that, the local anesthesia will numb the nerves of your tooth and gums so that you won’t feel discomfort during your procedure. If you’re a bit squeamish around needles, it’s probably in your best interest not to look at them, but it happens so quickly that it’s nothing you should fear.
Now you know the tools your dentists use. So the next time you visit the dentist, don’t be frightened by the different instruments that your dentist uses. Here at Dentist On Washington, we will make sure to make you comfortable and answer any questions to ease your fear!
Dentists On Washington has been named one of the best dentists in Philadelphia by multiple platforms. We take pride in our 5 Star Google Rating. We’re full-service dentistry providing Oral Care, Cosmetic Implants, Root Canals, Tooth Extraction, Invisalign Treatment, and much more in Philadelphia. We handle emergencies as well! Schedule Your Appointment.