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Air Polishing vs. Aqueous Powder Streaming 
Presenter: Melissa Obrotka, RDH, BBA, ICP Release Date: 1/18/19
Credits: 1 CEU, Free Self-Study Expiration Date: 1/18/27
AGD Subject Code: 490 Reviewed: 2024        

In the dental hygiene community, there is much buzz over air polishing since the U.S. market introduced the subgingival powders, glycine, and erythritol. How do we as a profession differentiate between what these powders can do that sodium bicarbonate and other more abrasive powders cannot? In the past, air polishing has been used mostly for stain removal as the first-generation of air-abrasive powders are not safe to apply subgingivally. Additionally, the application process generates a difficult to manage a poorly focused stream of air, water, and powder that the first-generation equipment produces, as well as patient discomfort, and the limitations of use, cause many air polishing devices to sit in the corners of operatories collecting dust. Aqueous powder streaming utilizes newer generation devices that produce a better stream of air, water, and powder that can be used subgingivally to practice biofilm decontamination.

The new generation of powder streaming devices that are manufactured for the application of finer air abrasive powders, such as glycine and erythritol, generated a shift in the dental hygiene process of care that focuses on biofilm decontamination as an initial therapy. This approach can improve the patient experience, decrease clinician’s debridement time, reduces CFU’s in comparison to ultrasonic and hand scaling1 and promotes oral health as well as systemic health.

Upon completion of this CE webinar, attendees will be able to:
• Understand the differences behind stain removal and biofilm management.
• Comprehend the differences between first-generation air polishing devices and the newer powder streaming devices.
• Identify which air abrasive powders are best for stain removal, biofilm decontamination or both.
• Benefits of treating the dental implant population with aqueous powder streaming.
• Introduction to adjuncts that improve debridement for both the patient and clinician when practicing aqueous powder streaming.
• Implement a new process of dental hygiene care workflow.   ( disclaimer , AGD PACE Statement )

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