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Beth Mobilian, RDH, BBA, MEd, is an assistant professor and dental hygiene clinic coordinator at the University of Tennessee College of Dentistry
Bruce Hamilton, DDS, is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Dentistry, where he is an assistant professor in the general dentistry department.
Anne Hill, DDS, is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Dentistry and a member of the International Association for Dental Researchers, American Dental Education Association and American Association for Women Dentists. She is currently an assistant professor at the University of Tennessee College of Dentistry in the department of general dentistry.
Three clinicians explain how DryShield helps save their practice time and money.
DryShield is an innovative device that simplifies most aspects of dentistry.
DryShield is autoclavable and easily installed. It provides the retraction, suction, and isolation required for most dental procedures. Bite blocks add to patient comfort and visibility. Made of a flexible silicone material, it comes in four sizes that contour comfortably within seconds to accommodate all dentitions.
Here are some observations on the use of the DryShield Isolation System:
• The developmentally disadvantaged dental patient offers many challenges, most of which may be exacerbated by the patient’s inability to fully cooperate with dental health care personnel. The DryShield Isolation System makes treatment easier for both the patient and provider. The system reduces the need for cooperation by gently holding the mouth open and providing a stable work area. The system protects soft tissue against sudden, rapid movements by the patient. DryShield suctions and retracts, allowing the dental assistant to focus more on the patient and expedite treatment. The dry field afforded by the system provides for faster and better dentistry. The disadvantaged patient might need additional instruction, guidance and encouragement when using the DryShield. The additional time and effort spent introducing the appliance will be amply rewarded.
• The pediatric patient needs to be treated gently and quickly, with as little trauma as possible. The DryShield helps reduce appointment times by as much as 30 percent when placing dental sealants, and allows for two quadrants to be treated simultaneously. The bite block keeps the patient open, the suction keeps the area dry, and the retraction allows for optimal visibility. The hygienist is able to place the sealants quickly and efficiently without the need for an assistant.
• When placing composite restorations, maintaining a dry, clean field is paramount to long term success. We found the DryShield’s performance in operative procedures very beneficial. It relieves the assistant of the tasks of retraction and suctioning, and enables the assistant to support the dentist more efficiently. It is more comfortable, less threatening and harder to accidentally dislodge than a standard dental dam.
• During quadrant scaling, visibility, access and fatigue are a few of the problems that dental hygienists face. The DryShield solves these problems, allowing the dental hygienist increased visibility and access because of the retraction and clearance offered by the use of the DryShield. Quadrant scaling is completed faster and more efficiently, decreasing both fatigue for the operator and patient. With better visibility, the dental hygienist can better see remaining calculus as the tissue is displaced with air. This ultimately results in healthier tissue and faster healing for the patient.
Overall, we found the DryShield to be a promising addition to the dental armamentarium. DryShield is fully autoclavable, making it cost effective. In addition, time and money are saved by freeing up the dental assistant’s duties and making procedures more efficient.