Air Abrasion: the Dental Care Technique that Does Not Involve a Dental Drill

Air abrasion is a drill less technique used by dentists to remove tooth decay and for other applications.

How does air abrasion work?
During air abrasion, an instrument sprays a fine stream of particles on the decayed portion of the tooth. These particles constitute fine dust of silica, aluminum oxide, or a mixture of baking soda and are sprayed toward the tooth surface by compressed air or a gas that runs through the equipment. As the process of spraying the particles goes on the decay in the tooth is removed.

Precautions while using air abrasion technique
Protective goggles should be used to prevent eye irritation from the spray and the use of a rubber sheet that fits around teeth thus protecting the surrounding teeth and tissues from harmful effects. The sucking of particles also prevents them from going to the lungs.

Benefits of using air abrasion for tooth decay

  • Air abrasion does not involve noise, pressure, heat or vibration.
  • There is no need of anesthesia. This is more so when the cavity is shallow.
  • Air abrasion makes the dry, which is advantageous during the placement of composite fillings.
  • Risk of fracture and chipping that may cause damage to the tooth is minimal, Fracture/damage could affect the life span of the filling.
  • Air abrasion is useful for the patient because it helps them get treatment for multiple sites.
  • It’s simple and fast.

Drawbacks in using air abrasion

  • Air abrasion can lead to sensitivity.
  • Air abrasion is not recommended for deep cavities those close to the tooth’s pulp. It is best suited for removing small cavities that form early on the surface of teeth.
  • The technique may not be useful unless the surface created by it is not smooth, which is suitable.

Air abrasion is ideal for children and others who are fearful and have minimal decay. It enables effective and painless treatment. It’s suitable for people who are anxious and fearful regarding the drilling procedures and the pain indulged in going with such procedures.