Why Is A Dental Dam Used?

There is a great deal of dental merchandise which is disposable by nature. These items cover the spectrum from dental tray covers, patient bibs, saliva ejectors and rubber dental dams.

A rubber dam is used by dentists in an effort to maintain the sterility of their work area when they are drilling and filling the teeth of their patients. Although the device was originally designed for use in a dental practice, it is also being used by those who advocate safe oral sex. Although it is not called a dental dam but an oral dam, the basic are the same as is the material from which they are made, latex.

The usual material used to make the dental dam is latex; however, there are people who are allergic to this material so the dam is also available in other materials. The dentist purchases the material either pre-cut into squares or on rolls that he can cut to size depending on the patient. As a piece of disposable dental merchandise, after use it is thrown away, never to be reused.

When the dentist is working on a tooth, the dental dam is used to isolate it or any other part of the oral cavity. The primary purpose is to expose only the tooth that is being worked on when drilling or a root canal is in progress. The dam does a couple of useful things; it makes sure the open tooth is not exposed to any bacteria, it provides the dentist with a clean working area and it prevents infection. The dental dam is perforated with a punch in the correct position to allow for the tooth to be exposed. The dam is stretched and then held stationary with clips and bands. The dental dam may not be the most comfortable device for the patient but is a great device to ensure cleanliness and ultimate oral hygiene. When the dental dam is used along with face masks and gloves, the patient is in a total sterile environment.

When a dental dam is used for safe sex, it should never be flipped over or used on any other part of the body as there is a distinct possibility that body fluids will be transferred. Click here for more information.


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