Rubber-Dam is a small stretchable sheet of rubber that dentists use to isolate teeth that dentist are working on and keep them dry. Rubber Dam also prevents debris falling into the throat.

How it is placed

To place Rubber Dam in mouth, a hole is made into it keeping the teeth-size and its location in mind. Then one or more small metal clamps are put on the teeth and then Rubber Dam is attached to the clamps. Then remaining rubber-dam is stretched using a small metal frame which keeps it stretched and out of the way, covering entire part of mouth.

Benefits of using Rubber Dam

Moisture presents a problem in the performance of many dental operations. Dryness of the operative field is essential to the success of restorations and endodontic procedures. The use of the rubber dam is the best method of maintaining a dry field. Rubber dam equipment is listed and illustrated in figure below. 

Rubber dam equipment.

Problems of using Rubber Dam

Not every patient is able to use a rubber dam. People with strong gag reflexes often have a difficult time wearing a rubber dam because the tongue is not able to penetrate through the rubber dam. People that suffer from claustrophobia may also have a difficult time wearing a rubber dam, for similar reasons. In the case of a gag reflex or claustrophobia, a small hole may be cut into the rubber dam to allow the tongue to penetrate through the rubber dam.

Rubber Dam Clamps

Following Rubber Dam Clamps are most commonly used.

  • Ivory Punch
  • Lightweight Rubber Dam Forceps
  • Rubber Dam Frame 6″
  • Stainless Steel Frame
  • Stainless Steel Clamps Tray
  • Stainless Steel Tray with Lid
  • 40 Pcs Rubber Dam Clamps

Rubber Dam Punchers

Rubber Dam Punchers are the instruments used to make hole in Rubber Dam sheet. Ivory Punch and Lightweight Ivory Forceps are the two most commonly used instruments to make punches in the Rubber Dam sheet. 

Further Reading & Resources

Root Elevators

Root elevators are instruments designed to loosen or remove dental roots, root fragments, or teeth. As with forceps, a variety of root elevator designs are available to suit different teeth, techniques, and locations in the mouth.

a. Stout A Root Elevator. This elevator’s nib is flat on one side and rounded on the other. The nib has straight tapering walls and a rounded end (figure 3-11).

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Figure 3-11. Stout A elevator.

b. Straight Root Elevator Number. 34-S: This elevator is straight and shaped like a gouge (figure 3-12). In cross-section its nib is crescent-shaped. It is one of the most commonly used elevators.

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Figure 3-12. Straight elevator number 34-S.

c. Straight Elevator Number 301. This elevator is similar in shape to but smaller than number 34-S (figure 3-13).

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Figure 3-13. Straight elevator number 301.

d. Apical Fragment Root Elevators. These are used to remove apical root fragments (figures 3-14 and 3-15).

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Figure 3-14. Miller root elevators numbers 73 and 74.

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Tooth Extracting Process

Dentists have a variety of tools they use to manipulate and apply pressure to teeth. Some of them are specialized pliers termed “extraction forceps.”

What happens during the tooth extraction process

The root portion of a tooth is firmly encased in bone (its socket) and it is tightly bound into place in this socket by a ligament. During the extraction process the dentist needs to expand the socket (widen and enlarge it) and separate the tooth from its ligament to a point where the tooth is loose and free to come out.

The bone of the jaw is compressible to some degree. That means if a dentist can apply firm pressure to a tooth, forcing it against one of the sides of its socket, the bone in that area will become compressed. The net result is that the socket becomes slightly enlarged. After repeated application of pressure to a tooth, from many different directions, the entire socket becomes larger. The ligament that holds the tooth in place will become detached from the tooth too. Finally at some point, enough space will have been created and the ligament separated from the tooth enough that the tooth will come out.

Dentists have a variety of tools they use to manipulate and apply pressure to teeth. Some of them are specialized pliers termed “extraction forceps.” Dentists also use levers that are called “elevators” (they look somewhat similar to small screwdrivers). Usually a dentist will use an elevator first. These tools are intended to wedge between the tooth and the bone surrounding it. The force the dentist applies to the elevator in turn places pressure on the tooth. This action on the tooth helps to expand its socket and separate its ligament. It’s somewhat common that a tooth can be extracted with just the use of an elevator.

Understanding the dentist’s use of extraction forceps is more straightforward. The dentist will grasp the tooth with the forceps and then firmly and deliberately rock the tooth back and forth. They will also rotate the tooth as much as it will. The combination of these tooth movements expands the tooth’s socket and separates its ligament.

Tooth Sensitivity

Sensitive Teeth

Tooth sensitivity is the discomforting feeling mostly of pain…

Tooth sensitivity is the discomforting feeling mostly of pain one a person experiences when they drink or eat something cold or hot, sweets, touch the tooth with other teeth or the tongue or even when you breathe in cool air. Doctors describe this feeling as Dentin Hypersensitivity or Root Sensitivity.
Tooth sensitivity occurs when the underlying layer of the tooth (Dentin) is exposed when the gum covering the tooth recedes and leaves the root of the tooth exposed to the factors that cause one to notice he/she has tooth Sensitivity.

Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Acidic foods – Regular partake of acidic food erodes away the outer covering of the tooth (Enamel) leaving you susceptible to teeth sensitivity. The acidic foods should be taken in controlled amounts.