by Dr Jeremy Sternson, Melbourne Dental Group, VIC
Every time I’m doing a check-up and clean, I religiously use an ultrasonic and then hand-scale afterwards. When I was hand-scaling, I needed at least three instruments so I could comfortably access all areas of the patient’s mouth. I came across the Blackjack Pro at a dental congress and it’s completely changed the way I do a clean and scale.
What’s good about it
Basically, it’s a sickle scaler but it has an offset head at an unusual angle. It takes about a day to get used to it but it’s now the only scaler I use to get rid of supragingival calculus from around the whole mouth.
The other thing I love about it is that it doesn’t require sharpening. It is manufactured with something called XP technology that makes and keeps it extremely sharp. I’ve been using it for about a year and it has remained as sharp as the day I purchased it. I also have a few patients who can’t tolerate the ultrasonic and I have no hesitation in grabbing the Blackjack to treat them.
When using something that isn’t ergonomically designed, you invariably end up sitting in a bad position. It can hurt your back, shoulders, hands and fingers. Since I’ve been using this scaler, I can access all of the mouth easily and it has made the process a lot more comfortable. I was surprised that something as dull as a scaler could makes such a difference.
What’s not so good
You need to be careful when first using this scaler as it is extremely sharp. Potentially, it could hurt a patient quite badly so it’s a matter of taking your time and getting used to it.