Dentists explore UV light technology as sanitation tool

Dentists nationwide are purchasing UV light technology to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in their practices, but there are many factors to consider before buying these costly products, according to CNBC.

UV light decontaminates surfaces by destroying the layer of lipids coating a virus. The technology has been proven to destroy the coronaviruses that cause SARS and MERS, but there have been limited studies examining how it interacts with the new coronavirus.

There is a variety of UV sanitizing products available to dentists, including disinfecting towers, air purifiers and chambers for equipment sterilization. These products have been used mainly in hospital settings, so it is uncertain how efficient they will be when implemented in smaller dental practices.

Dental staff should not be in the room when these devices are operating because they could incur skin or eye burns. Dental staff should also note that UV technology is not compatible with all equipment materials, such as plastic.

Dentists can use autoclaves, chambers that use heat to sterilize, to disinfect smaller pieces of equipment.

More articles on dental:
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CDC updates guidelines for dental offices resuming care
Dentists can calculate PPE burn rate with CDC tool

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