PPE is a term often thrown around when talking about doctors, dentists, and other professionals, but what the term actually means and why it is needed is not something that is often addressed. This article aims to explain what PPE is and examine why dentists need it.
What is PPE?
PPE is short for Personal Protective Equipment and refers to any and all equipment that scientists, doctors, and any other professionals wear in order to protect themselves while working.
The Purpose of PPE. The kind of PPE worn is generally determined by the profession of the person wearing the equipment, but the purpose of the equipment itself is and always will be the same. To protect the wearer from potential harm. This is why chemists wear gloves and goggles while they are working with dangerous chemicals and why warehouse workers are required to wear high visibility vests and steel-toed boots. The intention is always to protect.
Professions that Need PPE. As already mentioned briefly, an enormously wide range of careers invest in and need PPE as part of their everyday operations. In essence, if there is a regular chance that a worker will be injured by a part of their job, then people who do that job will likely be required to wear PPE that minimizes that risk.
Why Do Dentists Need PPE?
Dentists need to wear PPE for the same reasons that any other profession needs to because there is a risk that they could become injured or ill as a result of their job. The PPE they are required to wear is intended to reduce that risk as much as possible without hindering their ability to do their job.
What PPE Do Dentists Need?
Dentists wear a fair amount of PPE in the course of their checkups with patients, and during the various procedures that they perform, each part of their PPE is intended to keep them safe in one way or another.
Face Protection. Face masks are a part of dentists’ PPE requirements, and while there is some question as to which PPE face masks are the best to use, there are certain preferred brands. The point of the face mask is to protect the dentist’s mouth and nose from any potential contaminants that may be sent out of their patients’ mouths throughout their procedures.
Eyewear. In addition to face masks, protective eyewear is a part of the dentist’s PPE for certain dental procedures, this is to protect the eyes from any potential projectiles or contaminants that might endanger the eye throughout the course of the procedure.
Clothing. To keep their clothes clean and free from contamination from the wide range of patients that they see on a daily basis, dentists wear long-sleeved disposable gowns as a part of their PPE.
Gloves. Finally, to ensure that they are not introducing any contaminants into their
patient’s mouths while they are working, dentists wear sterile, disposable gloves as a part of their PPE.