How To Maintain Dental Suction Equipment

Dental suction equipment is an essential part of all procedures that dental patients undergo. The maintenance of dental suction devices should be a priority for any dental practitioner. Does your dental practice have a solid dental suction line maintenance program in place to ensure healthy levels of suction? Cleaning of the evacuation system should be an essential component of a daily maintenance regimen to prevent the risk of hygiene, health, and productivity issues.

Issues that May Occur if a Maintenance Plan is not in Place

  • Dangers Involved in Manual cleaning – Regular cleaning is sometimes neglected because it is a tedious job that involves manual cleaning of traps that could pose a danger to the person performing the task through the emission of harmful fumes.
  • Backflow – A major problem that may occur if regular maintenance is not done is the issue of backflow. This happens when the suction of the device is weak or slow. This could cause the flow to be reversed, allowing fluid to be emitted from the tube inserted into the mouth of the patient.
  • Cross Infection – The issue of backflow could be further complicated if the mouth of the patient is closed, inadvertently creating a negative amount of pressure to build up in the tubing. This may force foreign fluid to be emitted into the mouth with the resultant danger of cross-infection.

Healthy Suction Measurement 

A regular suction line maintenance program ensures that suction is enhanced, allowing oral liquids to be drawn from the mouth with little or no risk of debris or retained liquids reversing direction. While excessive suction is easily detected by the strong seizing of soft tissue inside the mouth, low suction can be identified by high levels of inefficiency and the detection of backflow.

How To Maintain Dental Suction Equipment

How to Maintain Your Dental Suction Equipment

As with all dental equipment, proper maintenance of the evacuation system is critical for high levels of functionality. 

  • Suction lines in hygiene treatment rooms should be cleaned daily using an evacuation system cleaner to remove debris, blood, and other fluids.
  • A disinfectant compatible with the evacuation system should also be run through the tubing at the same time.
  • Low-volume suction lines used during procedures should be disinfected with a small amount of water line cleaner after use on each patient. Check with the evacuation system manufacturer which disinfectants are compatible with their particular system.
  • Another option is the use of a saliva-ejector tip with a built-in mechanism to prevent backflow.
  • High-volume suction lines do not demonstrate the backflow phenomenon and therefore do not necessitate disinfection between patients. However, it is still essential to clean and disinfect the high-volume tubing at the end of every day.
  • In addition to the daily use of an evacuation system cleaner, shock treatment should be applied periodically to clear the system as accumulated debris can clog the lines. Most evacuation system cleaners contain enzymes to facilitate the cleaning of debris from the tubing. Shock treatment products are designed to remove accumulated deposits that cannot be removed by the use of evacuation system cleaners alone.
  • Suction traps should be cleaned manually with necessary precautions like the wearing of masks and gloves to prevent possible danger to the person doing the cleaning.
  • Disposable suction traps can be used; however, these often become clogged and should be changed weekly. These traps should only be disposed of in a licensed hazardous/medical waste unit together with amalgam capsules as there may be traces of mercury left behind from the mixing process.

Final Thoughts

When an evacuation system is functioning optimally it is not only beneficial for the clinical team but also for the health of the patient, while a weak or slow system causes inefficiency and stress for everyone. The implementation of a dental suction line maintenance program can prevent the risk of infectious bacteria from entering the mouth; optimise productivity during dental procedures; maximise overall efficiency during procedures, and enhance patient satisfaction.

If you’re searching for the best dental suction devices for your practice, Dental Equipment Services is the right choice for you. We are an Australian owned and operated dental equipment supplier, so get in touch to learn more about dental suction devices. Our staff will help you choose the right equipment based on your requirements and your budget.

For all your dental sensors and any other dental supply requirements, please call us today on 1300 144 975 or leave an enquiry.

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