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Aerosols in Dentistry

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Aerosols are airborne particles smaller than 50 microns whereas splatter is used to denote particles larger than 50 microns. Since they are small enough, aerosol particles stay in the air for a longer duration and can penetrate the lungs. A number of procedures in dentistry are responsible for producing aerosols and splatter including ultrasonic or sonic scalers for oral prophylaxis. The majority of the patients may be asymptomatic or carriers; which makes protection of the dental personnel, the patients themselves, and the prevention of contamination and spread a considerably challenging task.

The spread of Covid-19 occurs mainly due to close personal contact primarily via respiratory droplets when they land on the mouth, eyes, or nose of nearby individuals and through direct contact with infected surfaces. Since elective dental procedures can now be performed again, infection control guidelines are modified to keep in mind that unrecognized asymptomatic and mildly symptomatic patients are responsible for the transmission of disease.

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The Foundation of Modern Dentistry

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