At DentalJugaad.com, we consider dental mishaps as a general term which has caused damage to not only the patient, but also to the dentist, dental assistant or any dental equipment.
We have divided dental mishaps into the following:
Dental Mishap Incidences
We often blame this on the patient who accidently moves the tongue, or blame him/her of the buccal tissue overgrowth which got torn during crown preparation of upper second molar. We should realize that though there are certain incidences where the dentist cannot avoid and an accident does happen, this is rare, and such things can be avoided by proper positioning of the patient and using retraction devices such as the tongue and cheek retractor.
Mishaps in the dental clinic according to the owner of this website can be avoided by taking appropriate steps before starting any dental treatment.
This may be the most important step here to be considered. Correct patient positioning, good visualization, and retraction. Use of tongue and cheek retractors with proper staff training in assistance helps avoid such problems. Selection of the correct instruments for that particular treatment is of utmost importance since dental instruments are designed for specific purposes and areas of teeth, which when used in the correct manner, does not cause damage.
Heat injury on the lips caused during obturation can be easily avoided by placing a wet roll of cotton on the lip of the patient before inserting the heated instrument in the patient. This will protect the lips and cool the body of the instrument even if it touches the lips.
Taking Immediate care of a particular incidence
When an unexpected incidence takes place, it is important that the dentist takes the right action at the right time and as soon as possible. First relieve the pain by either spraying topical anesthesia during knicking or administer local anesthesia. This will be comforting and will cause localized vasoconstriction. Immediate pressure with cotton or gauze on the particular area for a certain time will reduce further bleeding. If the area is going to further interfere with dental treatment, cease further treatment and reschedule the appointment.
Accidental fall of the material or prosthesis down the patient throat should be a worry for the dentist if it enters the trachea, which may cause breathing problems and sudden death. If it enters the eosophagus, the problem may not be as serious since it will naturally pass through the digestive path of the body and eventually be excreted. Assurance to the patient in such cases is important.
Accidental pricking of a dental needle to the assistant or doctor during a procedure is something which needs immediate attention. The affected hand should be degloved and the area should immediately be washed under running water for some minutes. Free flow of blood should be encouraged. The affected person should receive a booster dose of hepatitis and anti retrovirals should be immediately started if the patient is a known or suspected source of HIV or Hepatitis.
Keep handy instruments in the operatory
Simple things in the dental clinic such as a mouth prop should be present and should almost always be used in pediatric patients which will prevent them from closing their mouth unexpectedly. Long artery forceps can be used to grasp small files which are just visible and are almost entering the throat of the patient.
Use quick presence of mind
Very very important! Simple things such as quickly turning the patient on one side and finger scoops can effectively remove a foreign object. Administrating local anesthesia in the supine position will eliminate syncope completely from your practice.
For certain medical emergency procedures, it is important that the clinician learns and attends certain live saving courses which are affiliated to the American Heart Association. As Dr. Odell says in one of his books, “life saving procedures cannot be learnt from the book. It has to be repeatedly practiced.” And though we say that it is fortunate that such incidences do not occur in our dental practices, it is in fact more difficult to handle it when it actually arises, because the more we practice, the better we are at delivering a treatment or procedure, and such incidences are rare for us.
Users are invited to put their incidences, how they reacted, whether they were successful in their attempts, and what they can teach others.