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New Mechanisms to Control Dental Procedure Spray Emissions

Alexandria, Va., USA — Since the onset of COVID-19 the potential risk of dental procedure spray emissions for SARS-CoV-2 transmission has challenged care providers and policy makers alike. The study, “Mechanisms of atomization from rotary dental instruments and its mitigation,” published in the Journal of Dental Research (JDR), found that there are multiple mechanisms for atomization of fluids from rotatory instruments and that parameters can be controlled to modify key spray characteristics during the current crisis.

Using high speed imaging and laser light-sheet illumination, procedural sprays were studied with variables including rotation speed, burr to tooth contact and coolant pre-misting. Elimination of pre-misting (mixing of coolant water and air prior to burr contact) and use of relatively low rotation speeds resulted in significant reduction in small droplets. Cutting efficiency was reduced, but sufficient coolant effectiveness appeared to be maintained. 

“This research demonstrates that spray from dental instruments can be controlled without losing the ability to carry out dental treatment,” said JDR Editor-in-Chief Nicholas Jakubovics. “Being able to modify the spray creates a safer experience for patients and oral health care providers during this current pandemic.”

View a PDF of this press release.

About the Journal of Dental Research
The IADR/AADR Journal of Dental Research (JDR) is a multidisciplinary journal dedicated to the dissemination of new knowledge in all sciences relevant to dentistry and the oral cavity and associated structures in health and disease. The JDR ranks #3 in Impact Factor of 91 journals, #2 without self-citations, as well as #2 of 91 in Article Influence with a score of 1.627. The JDR’s 5-year Impact Factor remained above 5 for the fifth year at 5.844 — ranking #2 of 91 journals. With over 20,000 citations, the JDR also boasts the most citations in the “Dentistry, Oral Surgery & Medicine” category, over 3,500 citations above the 2nd ranked journal in the field. 

International Association for Dental Research
The International Association for Dental Research (IADR) is a nonprofit organization with over 10,000 individual members worldwide, with a Mission to drive dental, oral and craniofacial research to advance health and well-being worldwide. To learn more, visit www.iadr.org. The American Association for Dental Research (AADR) is the largest Division of IADR with 3,100 members in the United States. To learn more, visit www.iadr.org/aadr.

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