How Dirty is Your Dentist’s Office?

How Dirty is Your Dentist’s Office? featured image
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As it turns out, dirty bibs are affecting more than just babies and seafood eaters. New research reveals that the clips used to hold bibs around your neck during dental visits are home to bacteria from patients, dentists and the environment, long after they’ve been sterilized.

Researchers found that although most of he bacteria found on dental bib clips are eliminated, the majority tested still had bacteria that remained after disinfection.

“The results of our analysis show that there is indeed a risk of cross-contamination from dental bib clips. The previous patient’s oral bacteria could potentially still be on the clip and the new patient has a chance of being exposed to infection by using that same bib clip,” says lead author Dr. Bruce Paster, chair of the department of microbiology at the Forsyth Institute. “It is important to the clinician and the patient that the dental environment be as sterile as possible; thus it’s concerning that we found bacteria on the clips after disinfection.”

But if dental offices are already going through standard procedures to ensure the dental clips are clean, how can you avoid the bacteria-ridden bib? Disposable bib holders are your best bet. And if none are available at your dentist’s office during your next visit, tape will do the trick. Better safe than sorry, right?

Does your dentist use disposable bib chains?

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