Stopping pathogens in their tracks

Preventing the spread of infection is a number one priority for dental practices, not only to be compliant with HTM 01-05 but also, importantly, to protect both patients and staff from the dangers of exposure to harmful pathogens. 

Without proper infection control procedures everything from a dental chair to a light switch can become a source of infection, so we should not just be aiming to control infectious diseases in a practice, we should be aiming to prevent them in the first place.

In the simplest terms the route of infection within a practice is akin to lighting a fire. A fire needs three things in order to burn: oxygen, fuel and a source of ignition, and without any one of these the fire will go out. In the same way, the spread of infection begins with an infective agent that alone is not a risk unless it is able to infect a susceptible host, making the final key component the actual route of infection.

Infection control is about breaking one or more links in the route of infection by removing the infectious agent, known as a pathogen,…

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