Hesperian Health Guides

Hesperian Health Guides

Clean Your Instruments After You Finish

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HealthWiki > Where There Is No Dentist > Chapter 11: Taking Out a Tooth > Clean Your Instruments After You Finish


If your instruments are dirty, they can pass on germs that cause tetanus or hepatitis (see page 172 in Where There Is No Doctor).

Germs on dirty instruments can also go into the socket and start an infection.

Dental instruments must be not only clean, but also sterile. This means they need to be both scrubbed and then boiled before they can be used again.

Use a brush and clean each instrument with soap and water. Be careful to scrub away all bits of old dried blood. Then kill the germs by placing the instruments into a covered pot of boiling water for 30 minutes.


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