Hesperian Health Guides

The Instruments You Need

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HealthWiki > Where There Is No Dentist > Chapter 6: Examination and Diagnosis > The Instruments You Need: Examination and Diagnosis

Three instruments are really enough:

a long, flat piece of wood 1. A wooden tongue blade to hold back the cheek, lips, and tongue.
a mirror on a long handle 2. A small mirror to let you look more closely at a tooth and the gums around it.
2 different probes at either end of a long handle. 3. A sharp probe to feel for cavities and to check for tartar under the gum.

If you have many people to examine, it is helpful to have more than one of each instrument. But be sure they are clean.

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Dirty instruments easily can pass infection from one person to another. After you finish an examination, clean your instruments in soap and water and then leave them in a germ-killing solution.

This page was updated:19 Feb 2018