DPR interviews Dr. Scott Dickinson about his experience using the Resurge Ultrasonic Cleaner from Dentsply Sirona.
When Dr. Scott Dickinson, DMD was beta testing the Dentsply Sirona’s new Resurge Ultrasonic Cleaner, he kept asking his staff if they were using it. He couldn’t hear it. They assured him they were. It was just that much quieter than the ultrasonic unit they had been using previously. He was surprised-and impressed. He called it his first aha! moment with the new equipment.
“Ultrasonics tend to be that thing that when you turn it on, everyone in the office knows it’s on. It’s like a squeaky wheel,” Dr. Dickinson says. “When the Resurge runs, you don’t know it’s on.”
His second “aha! moment” was when his instruments came back squeaky clean from their first run through the ultrasonic unit. No composite or bonding agent remained that tends to accumulate over time, build up that Dr. Dickinson admitted had probably been there a while. He asked his assistants if they had scrubbed them before putting them in the new unit. They hadn’t. The Resurge had blasted everything off.
“I said, ‘I’ll take it! At that point, I knew I wanted one,” he said. A week later, his rep delivered Dr. Dickinson’s new Resurge unit to his busy practice.
A better workhorse
Ultrasonics get plenty of use, running in some practices at least a dozen times a day. It’s a part of the daily routine that most dental professionals don’t think about very much. Everyone throws their instruments in the ultrasonic after they use them. Dr. Dickinson admitted that after practicing 19 years, he never paid attention to the ultrasonic unit. It was only after he agreed to try the new one that the ultrasonic was on his radar at all.
“It’s like the dishwasher,” Dr. Dickinson explains. “All of a sudden you get a new dishwasher and you are like, ‘Whoa! My dishes have never been clean like that before. What’s going on?’ That’s the way it was when I got to use the unit. It looked cool, and it was significantly better than the ultrasonic I had used prior to it.”
The quiet operation and the powerful clean are not the only benefits that Dr. Dickinson experienced. He also appreciates the digital self-timer that he can run for different things. “Most ultrasonics have those old kitchen timers, where you spin the dial, and they count down,” he says. “They go ‘ding,’ and then they turn off. Sometimes they get stuck. This one is different. It’s just nice. It’s clean. You can set it for any time you want.”
He also appreciates the size of the unit. Dr. Dickinson estimates he sees a patient an hour. His hygienist does, too. Then they have overflow patients as well. That means the practice goes through many instruments in a day. “I run a busy office, but this ultrasonic is big enough that I only run it every two hours versus some of the smaller ones that I would run constantly,” he notes.
Dr. Dickinson cleans his instruments in cassettes and can get six cassettes in there per cycle. “It accommodates a busy office,” he says about the 2.0-gallon unit he purchased.
Dr. Dickinson thinks the little things can make a big difference in the patients’ perception of the practice, including the appearance of the sterilization bay. After all, patients walk by it and look in there. It makes an impression. “Your sterilization bay needs to look sterile, clean, and modern. He compared the appearance of other ultrasonic units to props from “Lost in Space,” the 60s Sci-Fi televisions show.
“‘Danger, Will Robinson!’” he says, laughing, “They are 1950s technology. We can do better. This is the first time I have ever seen anybody put effort into making something like this look nice. The Resurgence Ultrasonic is very modern; it’s streamlined; it’s digital. It has a LED light read out.”
A commitment to a high-end
Dr. Dickinson is also a fan of Dentsply Sirona. A sometimes lecturer for the company, he often tells other doctors something he admires about Dentsply Sirona is that they always have a beautiful product, and it’s always high-end. “I’m a guy, so everything is cars, right?” he says. “When I am training, and I say the nice thing about Dentsply is that whatever they decide to do, it’s a Lexus. You might pay a little bit more for it, but it’s so worth it. “
Dr. Dickinson appreciates that Dentsply Sirona kept to that standard, even when they work with these small instruments. “They did a bang-up job of it,” he says. “They could have made a lousy ultrasonic unit and sold it by default because they are who they are, but this is an excellent unit. It’s encouraging to me. If I want something, I will go to them first. They always do it right.”
People sometimes react poorly to change. It’s no different in the dental practice. Doctors and staff are used to what they have and don’t always consider what could be if they were to switch equipment. Dr. Dickinson remembers when digital X-rays first came on the market. “Dentists were resistant to that at first but now if you walk into an office that doesn’t have digital X-ray you think it’s a dinosaur,” he says.
For nearly two decades, Dr. Dickinson has not worked in an analog office. He loves how digital dentistry has improved the science. “I was using digital coming out of residency and I didn’t look back,” he says. The difference with this change is that if an office buys a better ultrasonic unit than it is currently using, there isn’t the same degree of disruption to the status quo that adopting digital radiography might have had on a practice.
The Resurge Ultrasonic unit is also simple to use. As far as the set up went, Dr. Dickinson says they took it out of the box, plugged it in and filled it with water. “It doesn’t get any easier,” he says.
Not only that, unlike digital radiography and other technology outlays, the ultrasonic unit isn’t a high-ticket item, making the decision to upgrade equipment an easier one. “It’s not one of the things you have to dwell on whether you want to make the investment. This one is a no-brainer,” he says.
For those clinicians that sometimes resist adopting new technology, Dr. Dickinson would advise them to embrace the improvements that come along with the change. “We are gadget guys, and we are reluctant to change. We worry, ‘Oh. It doesn’t look like the old one.’ It’s OK. Cars don’t look the same either!” he says, laughing. “Things are getting better. This ultrasonic is significantly better than the other one. In 10 years, there might be one even better; you just have to go with it.”