Up Next: A Small Handpiece With Big Capabilities

Dental Products Report, Dental Products Report June 2022, Volume 56, Issue 6

Why Illinois dentist Gabriela Duraes, DDS, MS, adopted Bien-Air’s Nova handpiece and why she can’t see herself switching anytime soon.

The Practice

With 2 locations of her Blooming Smiles general dentistry practice in the Chicago, Illinois, area, Gabriela Duraes, DDS, MS, provides a wide range of services. A single day can include everything from doing composite restorations to placing implants to performing root canals. Dr Duraes says her goal is to provide her patients with the best comprehensive care under one roof.

The Prior Solution

Although she used electric handpieces exclusively when training to be a dentist, Dr Duraes says that since she left her residency a decade ago, she did not use an electric handpiece again until recently. In that time, she says she has grown both comfortable and confident using an air-driven handpiece.

Upgrade Inspiration

For Dr Duraes, the shift back to using an electric handpiece came from a desire for more power and consistency than she could find in an air-driven handpiece. In the past she had been wary of using electric handpieces because of their increased weight and general bulkiness. When she learned about Bien-Air’s Nova, she thought she had finally found what she was looking for.

“I was also looking for a way to reduce my procedure time without compromising my comfort,” she says. “After searching, I realized that Nova could be what I was looking for, and I was right.”

The Benefits

The effects of switching to the electric Nova handpiece were immediately apparent. Dr Duraes says the handpiece felt comfortable to use right away and has been very easy on her wrist. After using the handpiece for a short time she says her 3 favorite features are its small size, light weight, and impressive power.

The small size of the handpiece’s head and neck surprised her, but the benefits of having such a small handpiece were evident from the moment she first used the Nova in a patient’s mouth. She says the small size allows better access to difficult areas in the oral cavity, and it also makes it easier to treat pediatric or petite adult patients.

“It gives you great access and visibility, which I have never noticed in any other handpiece,” she adds.

At first, the small size of the handpiece made Dr Duraes wonder if the system sacrificed power for size but using the Nova handpiece made it clear that this was not the case. She says it has all the power clinicians expect in an electric handpiece and provides smooth, efficient cutting. In fact, she believes the new handpiece is allowing her to reduce patient chair time while delivering top-notch care.

“Nova was able to make me a more efficient dentist,” she says. “My treatment times are shorter, and I am more productive. Nova never loses power when cutting zirconia crowns or bridges, making the removal of any restoration much faster.”

The fact that her new handpiece not only makes her work easier but enhances the patient experience is a big reason Dr Duraes is such a big fan of the Nova. Because she can see more and the handpiece offers the cutting power she needs, Dr Duraes credits the Nova with helping her cut preps faster and thus reduce the time patients need to keep their mouths open.

Another unexpected benefit from using the Nova handpiece is an increase in patient comfort, according to Dr Duraes. She says the handpiece makes less noise than her air turbine handpieces of the past, and it also doesn’t vibrate as much as some handpieces. This allows patients to feel more relaxed when they’re at her practice.

“Less noise is definitely an overall improvement noticed in my practice,” she says. “Patients’ anxiety is reduced with less noise and vibration also.”

What’s Up Next

Dr Duraes says she can’t imagine replacing it with anything else any time soon. Although the industry has yet to see the first silent dental handpiece, Dr Duraes says even that innovation might not be enough to get her to move away from the Nova.

“The only way for me to consider a change would be the invention of a handpiece with no noise at all, and even in this hypothetical situation if the handpiece is bulkier and heavier, I would still stick with my Nova,” she says.