Eco-Dentistry-Association Certification: What is it?

Dentist promoting green dentistry, eco dentistry

In our world today, we all have to come together to make a concerted effort for a healthier environment.  Dental practices contribute a large amount of metallic waste generated by various dental procedures along with excessive use of water and electricity.  Eco-Dentistry-Association (EDA) Certification is a comprehensive program for dental offices and independent hygiene practices that analyzes how well a practice is designed to benefit the planet, the patients, and the environment. Specifically, each practice that incorporates eco-friendly initiatives in the areas of:  1) Dental Processes & Procedures; 2) Office Administration & Marketing; and 3) Office Design, Furnishings & Construction are rewarded with the certification.  Niles Family Dentistry is an eco-friendly dental practice.  Dr. Niles has been certified by the Eco-Dentistry Association of which she is a member. By becoming a patient of Dr. Niles, you are joining a collaborative effort to help industry awareness and efforts across the globe for a healthier world.

 

Eco-Dentistry Dental Processes & Procedures

Dry Vac System

Our practice is dedicated to saving water, energy and money.  One example of how we do this is choosing to use a Dry Vac System instead of the Wet Ring Vacuum. The Dry Vac System is waterless, saving 360 gallons of water per day when compared with more common dental office systems. Our dental vacuums also run at a much lower RPM than most others, making them more energy efficient.

 

Digital X-rays

We also choose to better the environment by using digital x-rays (radiography) over traditional radiography for our imaging needs.  Traditional radiography requires storage space and hazardous chemicals for image development. Digital radiography eliminates these risks and problems and since digital x-rays exist only as a digital file, they can be stored on a computer allowing precious materials to be conserved and space to be saved.   But one of the greatests benefits of digital radiography is that it exposes patients to up to 90% less radiation. Your comfort and safety are our primary concern, which is why the team at Niles Family Dentistry are big believers in digital radiography.  Improving your smile shouldn’t require unnecessary risk, and digital radiography ensures our patients are safe and relaxed with the care they are receiving. If all of this wasn’t enough, with the technological advancements that make digital radiography possible comes the ability for Dr. Niles to diagnose problems more precisely, providing you with a better picture of your oral health.

 

Infection Control Methods

At Niles Family Dental, we have taken measures to ensure that our sterilization procedures are effective and eco-friendly. Sterilization procedures, if not kept in check, can fill our environment with hazardous chemicals and plastic waste. We have replaced chemical-based sterilization with steam sterilization.  Dental sterilizers use steam—at temperatures reaching 270° F—to completely sterilize instruments and equipment. This steam sterilization of various surgical tools and dental instruments is efficient and safe and eliminates the need for toxic, cold-sterilization methods. We also incorporate reusable sterilization pouches, patient bibs and other barriers to reduce waste. Disinfectants are eco-friendly and maintain a hospital-grade environment in our operatories.

 

Eliminating Mercury-Containing Dental Material

Niles Family Dentistry is a Mercury-free practice. Dental amalgam is a primitive filling material made of between 43 and 54 percent mercury.  Amalgam pollutes our environment in the following ways: 1) water via dental clinics and human waste; 2) air via cremation, dental-clinic emissions, sludge incineration, and respiration; and 3) land via landfills, burials, and fertilizer. Once in the environment, dental mercury converts to its even more toxic form: methylmercury and becomes a major source of mercury in the fish people eat. Dental mercury in the environment can cause brain damage and neurological problems, especially for children and unborn babies, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

Eco-Dentistry Office Administration & Marketing

Paperless Charting

Our office is becoming a completely digital (paperless) dental office. This means all x-rays and charting are made and recorded with the aid of the computer. This technology allows us to maintain your dental records electronically, and cuts down the unnecessary paperwork used with traditional paper charting. Traditional paper charting is difficult to keep standardized from doctor to hygienist to assistant. Even handwriting differences and coding make the charts look different. The computer eliminates this problem by using consistent charting methods that are accurate and precise, making it easy to read your dental chart and see up-to-date information. Digital charting standardizes the charting process so it is clear, easy to understand, and enables us to provide the most accurate and precise care to our patients. When needed, this method also allows us to quickly and securely share information with your other health-care providers. The use of digital forms also allows you to save time by completing forms online from the convenience of your home.

 

Eco-Dentistry Office Design, Appliances & Construction

The planning of the Niles Family Dentistry building was done with purpose. During the construction we chose to either recycle or reuse much of the existing structure and materials. We chose products that were environmentally friendly–from the paint, to the carpet, to even incorporating Beetle Kill wood.  The appliances that occupy our office are all Energy-Star compliant and uniforms and laundry is done at home.  We use fluorescent lights throughout the practice which use 25%-35% of the energy used by incandescent products to provide a similar amount of light. They also last about 10 times longer. We also use LED lights in the operatory which use 50% less energy than conventional operatory lights.

 

Call for an Appointment

Dr. Niles and her staff will do their best to make your dental care an easy, relaxed process and they will listen carefully to your concerns while thoroughly assessing your dental health. Long-term goals extend to building a relationship with you that lasts for years by recommending and delivering only the care you need. Dr. Niles is a family dentist in Niwot, Colorado, with convenient access to the communities of Boulder, Longmont, Lafayette, and Louisville.  Niles Family Dentistry offers state-of-the-art family dentistry and cosmetic dentistry.  Call for your appointment today at (720) 744-0001. We look forward to meeting you and your family!

Ashley Niles

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