by Dr Vincent Wan, Central Brisbane Dental and First Dental Studio, QLD
Patients are always fearful when undergoing an extraction so it’s a huge relief that the days of just yanking out a tooth with a set of forceps is long gone. The Hu-Friedy periotomes smoothly sever ligaments and help preserve bone.
What’s good about it
These periotomes are nice little instruments with very thin blades. They can be gently inserted between the bone and the tooth to sever the ligaments that join them. The tooth can then be elevated out of the jaw without obviously grabbing it with forceps. Despite how gentle you try to be, patients really don’t like the feeling of a tooth being grabbed and their head being moved from side to side. By using periotomes prior to extraction, the patient will have the best experience possible.
In most cases, once the ligaments are gone, the tooth can be extracted very easily. Not only does using the periotomes save bone but it preserves the surrounding tissue. Many people want an implant to replace their missing tooth so by saving bone and tissue while causing minimal trauma during an extraction, the future implant is destined to be more successful.
I’ve been using these periotomes for the past five years and during that time we have been doing more extractions and implants. These are really beautiful instruments that make the whole procedure much easier.
What’s not so good
The main problem with these tools is that because they have extremely thin blades, they blunt fairly quickly and then need to be replaced. They’re only truly effective when they’re very sharp.