Love giving back to the environment? You can do it in yet another way through eco-friendly dentistry. Niles Family Dentistry is committed to being eco-friendly, which makes more of an impact on the environment than you might think. Green dentistry consists of four areas of focus including: 1) reducing waste and pollution, 2) saving water, energy, and money, 3) supporting a wellness/healthy lifestyle, and 4) going high-tech to save paper and energy. According to eco-dentistry.org, the average dental office uses 4.8 million lead foils and creates 3.7 tons of mercury waste per year. That’s not including sterilization pouches, patient bibs, paper waste, and more. Eco-friendly dentistry helps prevent waste in the environment, keeping your community cleaner. Niles Family Dentistry is committed to helping not only their patients, but the world in which they live. Learn more about eco-friendly dentistry with us and see just how important it is.
Eco-friendly dentistry is becoming so popular that there is even an Eco Dentistry Association that promotes the reduction of waste and pollution in the environment. With so much going on in the environment, there is a growing community of patients and doctors alike that want to do all they can to combat environmental waste and clean up the communities around them. Eco-friendly dentistry is also known as “green dentistry”—green meaning that it gives back to the environment. According to the Eco Dentistry Association, it is a “high-tech approach that reduces the environmental impact of dental practices” and seeks to do the four things we mentioned above. Those are 1) reducing waste and pollution, 2) saving water, energy, and money, 3) supporting a wellness/healthy lifestyle, and 4) going high-tech to save paper and energy. Dr. Niles centers her dental office around practices that promote overall health and wellness.
We have a passion for the environment and strive to give back where we can and provide aids for our patients to give back as well. We even provide discounts for our patients that ride their bikes to their appointments instead of drive. Who else do you know that does that? Even Dr. Niles rides her bike to work most days. We do all of the following to save water, energy and money as well as reduce waste and pollution:
- We recycled construction materials when our practice was built.
- We used environmentally-friendly building materials and products (even with the paint and carpet) during construction.
- We use sterilization procedures that replace steam with chemicals, eliminates toxic sterilization substances and methods, and we use eco-friendly disinfectants that are natural.
- We recycle waste products and use an electronic system for patient records. We use solely digital x-rays as well. Going digital saves hundreds of pounds of paper each year!
- LED lights in-office that use about 50% less energy than conventional lighting.
- We have conventional vacuum systems (such as our Dry Vac System) and an office water distiller.
We also do more than this, which you can learn about from our website or by coming to see us. The amount of waste produced in just one dental practice is alarming, and if you think about the hundreds of dental practices in the U.S. alone, the waste literally piles up!
Waste From Dental Practices
Americans generate an estimated 250 MILLION tons of garbage each year, many of which goes into landfills, polluting the earth and the environment. A lot of these materials decompose and leak into the water systems or are burned into the atmosphere. The worst part, is that plastic products that are used never decompose. Each person can make a difference in waste reduction though. According to eco-dentistry.org, the average dental office uses 4.8 million lead foils and creates 3.7 tons of mercury waste per year. Mercury waste is a problem because it is a toxic chemical and one that we don’t want in our water, food or soil, but yet, that is where it ends up oftentimes. Niles Family Dentistry is a mercury-free practice that focuses on natural chemicals and substances for cleaning and maintenance. Lead foils are also another major issue, as lead from waste is a deadly neurotoxin that seeps into the soil and can end up in our plants that are then used for food. Lead can stick around for upwards of 2000 years too. Yikes! The EDA estimates that only about 25% of dental practices across the U.S. have eliminated lead foils from their practices, and Niles Family Dentistry is one of them.
The Benefits of Our Eco-Friendly Dentistry
When you go to an EDA-approved eco-friendly dental practice, you can already know that the staff values the environment and strives to do what they can to make the world better. By reducing water usage in our office, we reduce hundreds of tons of water waste each year. This is especially important as an average of 36 states in the U.S. go through a drought crisis any given year. We have no mercury-containing dental material in our practice, so our mercury pollution contribution is 0%. We reduce, reuse and recycle all the materials we possibly can from our office, which are then used for construction materials and other means so they are not just wasted. Having an eco-friendly dental practice also promotes better health and wellness in the community at large and with our patients. We support and encourage others to support local businesses and use the resources we already have in the community.
There are many ways that we can assist you in becoming more eco-friendly and much more that our practice implements to be more eco-friendly. If you want to learn more about eco-friendly dentistry and what you can do to help the environment call Niles Family Dentistry at (303) 652-0400 today!