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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2023  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 94-99

Dental health-care professionals' awareness and knowledge of sterilization and disinfection practices for new, unused endodontic files and gutta-percha in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia


1 Department of Endodontics, Faculty of Dentistry, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of General Dentistry, Faculty of Dentistry, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
3 Department of Oral Biology, Faculty of Dentistry, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
4 Department of Dental Public Health, Faculty of Dentistry, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
5 Department of Restorative Dentistry and Endodontics, College of Dentistry, Riyadh Elm University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Khalid Merdad
Department of Endodontics, Faculty of Dentistry, King Abdulaziz University, P. O. Box: 80209, Jeddah 21589
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/sej.sej_176_22

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Introduction: The proper protocol for the sterilization of instruments is essential in dental practice; especially because some clinicians think that new files directly from the manufacturers are already sterile and can be used directly on patients without the standard sterilization. Therefore, the aim of this study is to analyze the dental levels of professionals and their auxiliary staffs concerning awareness, knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors about sterilizing endodontic instruments and gutta-percha. Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, using an online, randomly distributed survey for dental health-care practitioners. The survey questions were about the participants' demographics, knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors about sterilization techniques for endodontic files and gutta-percha. Data analysis consisted of simple descriptive statistics presented in frequency tables and percentages. Results: Of the 197 dental health-care practitioners surveyed, the majority (84.7%) stated that they use files directly from the manufacturer's packages, while only 15.3% reported sterilizing the new endodontic files before using them with patients. As for gutta-percha, 23.4% of the participants answered that they disinfected it before obturation. About 60% of the participants were unaware that the sterilization's expiry date was printed on the endodontic file packages. Conclusions: The results indicated that the majority of dental practitioners and students do not practice an effective sterilization protocol for endodontic files and gutta-percha. Based on these results, this study recommends that more education about sterilization protocols should be added to the infection control curriculum.


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