Like fine clothing, jewelry or high-speed handpieces your instruments may also require special care. Although stainless steel instruments, including XP, have outstanding built-in corrosion resistance, incompatibilities do exist with specific chemicals which should be avoided.
Instruments should not be in contact with the following chemicals for more than approximately two hours (then immediately and thoroughly rinsed and dried): aluminum chloride, barium chloride, mercury dichloride, calcium chloride, carbolic acid, citric acid, cresol, mercury chloride, mercury salts, phenol, permanganic acid potash, potassium thicyanate, ferrous chloride, stanniferous chloride, tartaric acid.
The following chemicals should be avoided completely: Aqua Regia, iron chloride, sulphuric & hydrochloric acid, and iodine.
Each AEI (American Eagle Instruments Inc.) instrument is subject to comprehensive quality controls during all phases of production, thus guaranteeing the high quality standard expected of AEI instruments.
Since AEI's inception over 15 years ago, we have used only high grade surgical stainless steels which contain various percentages of carbon and chromium. A specially designed hardening process gives AEI instruments a unique balance of flexibility and optimal durability.
The majority of AEI instruments are hand-crafted; shaped, ground and polished by hand. Tips are prepared individually by highly skilled precision crafts-people. Each instrument is continually held to strict quality controls during each stage of fabrication.
With the joint cooperation of various universities and major dental institutions world-wide, AEI is able to offer a range of instruments which include the most recent scientific innovations, and are then fabricated using state-of-the-art technology. AEI is constantly expanding its manufacturing horizons to meet your expectations.
Each AEI instrument has been designed and manufactured with the greatest of care to fulfill specific functional criteria. Incorrect handling or misuse reduces the service life of these precision instruments. Resultant damage caused by incorrect use is not always related to the instrument design, and the majority of instrument damage can be minimized with proper and routine instrument care. A pair of scissors should not be used as cutting pliers; a needle clamp is not a pair of tweezers; and scalers should not be used as root elevators. Designed use is thus an integral part of proper instrument care.
XP curettes are designed for fine sub-gingival scaling and root planing. Avoid using them to trim margins and remove overhangs. As a result of our new XP technology, we have eliminated the need to apply excessive pressure during use. You will be able to use less force, with a lighter more tactile grasp.
Sterilization cannot be a substitute for cleaning! An instrument exposed to high temperatures before being properly cleaned and rinsed, can cause the initiation of permanent stains onto the instrument surface.
Stubborn impurities and debris should be removed with a soft brush (never with steel wool, drill brushes or abrasive items). The instrument should be rinsed in distilled water (not tap water). Some dental surgeries incorporate ultrasonic units or thermo-disinfectors within their cleaning systems, where extreme care is also required to ensure that the cleaning agents and chemicals being used do not damage the instrument subsurface. These methods clean but do not sterilize!
AEI recommends that instruments be disinfected using solutions which are phenol-free. We recommend using our ultrasonic solution (AEUC0.5/30).
Instruments should be cleaned in a non-corrosive, neutral cleaning agent with minimal foaming.
AEI recommends using cassettes for sterilizing any of your instruments. Cassettes offer the protection your instruments need to avoid damage by contact with other instruments, especially when using ultrasonic cleaning systems. They also offer proper flow of air or water for more efficient cleaning and sterilization.
Regardless of sterilization method, always inspect your equipment for remaining debris and organic or mineral deposits. These can be transferred to the instruments and potentially cause corrosion.
Do not batch stainless steel, aluminum, brass or copper instruments together during the cleaning or sterilization processes. If batched together, a potential for electrolysis reactions between dissimilar metals will exist, which can produce etching and corrosion on the instrument surfaces.
Use only distilled or de-mineralized water when caring for dental instruments. High mineral levels in the water, or water that is too soft, can cause permanent stains on the instrument surface.
Whether you use autoclave or germicidal solvents, always follow the manufacturer's instructions precisely, regarding specific recommendations for temperatures and times.
Careful drying of instruments during cleaning and sterilizing processes is extremely important. Any remaining water or condensation can cause potential rust or corrosion on the instrument surface and into the substrate. This is particularly important when the pouch-sterilized process is used or when the autoclave has been opened prematurely. It is advisable to remove any remaining moisture with a sterile cloth.
Identification or engraving added to the instrument surface by the end-user is discouraged. When the polished surface is compromised, a potential inroad for oxidation and/or corrosion is created. 'Slip-on' ID rings is a recommended alternative for custom instrument identification.
With proper care, the longevity and performance of all your professional dental instruments can be extended. We hope that the above has been helpful to you in achieving this goal.
Dos and Don'ts
#1) Proper Usage
- Do lightly plane away heavy calculus with 4-6 strokes
- Do make patients more comfortable by using XP
- Don't use on margins
- Don't use on overhangs
- Don't use on amalgam
- Don't use on composite
- Don't break away heavy calculus
#2) Proper Care
- Do clean debris off of instruments prior to sterilization
- Do use cassettes for cleaning and storage
- Don't allow tips to touch while cleaning or storing
#3) Proper Solutions
- Do use Ph balanced cleaners
- Do use AEIs ultrasonic cleaner solution
- Don't use Chlorine, Chloride, or Sodium Chloride based solutions or water
- Don't use Saline based solutions
#4) Proper Drying
- Do always dry instruments thoroughly before storing
To extend the life of your Hi-Lite, it is best to avoid ultrasonic cleaning, which may affect the bond of the Hi-Lite markings to the stainless steel. Alternately, it is recommended to hand-clean the tip with a mild liquid soap prior to sterilization. During sterilization, avoid temperatures above 300°F/150°C, which will discolor your Hi-Lite Probe markings.
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