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Dental Hygiene II - Chapter Page 628-640 - Time To Sharpen

1) Easier calculus removal
2) Improved stroke control
3) Reduces the number of strokes
4) Increased patient comfort and satisfaction
5) Reduced clinical fatigue
-a dull instrument requires more pressure and more strokes= unecessary pressure on MS system

Advantages of instrument sharpening are?

1)To restore a fine sharp edge to a dull instrument
2) Technique removing a minimum amount of
metal from the instrument
3) Maintain the original characteristics of the
working edge

Goals of sharpening are?

1. First sign of dullness
2. During treatment
3. After treatment

How often should you sharpen?

1) Composition synthetic stones - (coarse) - water
2) India synthetic stones -(medium) - water & oil
3) Arkansas natural stone - (fine) - oil not advised when treating patients
4) ceramic synthetic stones - (fine) - water advised when sharpening during patient treatment

What are the types of sharpening stones?

1) To preserve Strength of the instrument
2) To maintain the shape of the instrument
3) More effective scaling with less pressure
* increased pressure
* uncomfortable for the patient
* more chance of the instrument flying off and could cause injury to myself as wel as the patient

Why do we sharpen instruments?

Between 70-80 degrees is needed to recreate angle between face and lateral surface

Correct stone angulation is __?

* Burs that project from the cutting edge (wire edges)
* Can cause gouging if the cementum

Minute metal burs are __?

* By finishing with a downward stroke
* Can be seen or cleared with cylindrical sharpening stone

How can minute burs be removed from the cutting edge?


Use new instruments (master samples) to compare with ___ instruments.

1. Greater precision of treatment
2. Less working time
3. Increased tactile sensitivity
4.Grip of instrument is less
5. Better control
6. Fewer strokes needed
7. Less possibility of burnishing calculus
8. Less trauma and discomfort to the patient
9. Less chance for altering the tooth
10. Less clinician fatigue

What are some of the benefits of sharp instruments?

1. Hygienist frustration
2. Wasted time, effort and energy
3. Loss of control
4. Loss of patient confidence
5. More inclined to develop musculoskeletal disorders

What are some disadvantages for using dull instruments?

arkansas stone

A natural abrasive stone is known as __?

1. Ruby stone
2. Carborundum stones
3. Diamond stone
4. Ceramic aluminum oxide
5. Steel alloys

Some artificial materials used in sharpening stones are __?

Unmounted and mandrel mounted

What are the two categories of stones?


This is a stone category which is flat & cylindrical - Neivert Whittler

Mandrel mounted

This is a stone category that is straight.

1. Autoclavable plastic or acrylic test stick (better)
2. Visual or glare test

How do you determine sharpness of your instrument?

Visual or glare test

This sharpness test involves holding the instrument under light and rotating until the edge is facing into the light: a sharp cutting edge will not reflect light. Use of a magnifying glass in recommended

Plastic test stick

This sharpness test involves the use of a ___ which when the sharp cutting edge is placed against the stick, it grabs and produces a metallic "clicking sound."

Entire length of the cutting edge

When using the plastic test stick method it is best to always check the __ to ensure complete sharpness of the blade.

1. spacious
2. well lit
3. table should be steady and high enough to place elbow on & hold instrument at eye level

Your work area when sharpening instruments should be __?

1. Stone
2. Lubrication agent
3. safety glasses
4. gloves
5. cotton tip applicators
6. gauze
7. magnifying glass
8. test stick

What materials are needed for sharpening instruments?

1. always sharpen sterile instruments if possible for operator safety
2. sharpen at the 1st sign of dullness (i.e. may be during patient treatment)
3. Always use sterile stones and test sticks

What are some sterilization issues associated with instrument sharpening?

1. Hone or burnish the nonbeveled surface adjacent to the cutting edge

After sharpening always remember to __?

removing the "wire edge"

Another name for burnishing the nonbeveled edge is __?

During sharpening some of the metal particles removed during grinding remain attached to the edge of the instrument

How is the wire edge produced?

If allowed to remain, the tiny particle may be removed when the instrument is applied to the tooth surface during treatment

Why is the wire edge a problem?

By sharpening into, toward or against the cutting edge the production of the wire edge is minimized

How is the wire edge minimized?

By wiping the instrument carefully with a dry gauze square or an alcohol wipe to remove particles

How is the wire edge removed?

1. reduction in metal
2. breakage
3. blades will no longer adapt to the tooth
4. Used instruments should be reserved for patients with minimal deposits

Sharpening causes eventual __?

1. Stationary flat stone with moving instrument
2. Moving flat stone with stationary instrument

What are the 2 techniques for sharpening instruments?

1. Examine the cutting edge to be sharpened
2. Review the angulation to be restored at the dull cutting edge
3. Stabilize and position the instrument
4. Apply the sharpening stone to the instrument
5. Activate the sharpening stone
6. Test for sharpness

What are the steps to moving flat stone with a stationary instrument?

1. Hold the stone perpendicular to the floor and the shank 1/3 of the cutting edge
2. From the 90 degree angle with the face of the instrument open the stone to make an angle of 110 degrees

When APPLYING the sharpening stone during moving flat stone application you should always remember to __?

1. Maintain the stone in contact with the blade and at the proper angle throughout the procedure
2. Tighten your grasp of the instrument while applying a smooth even pressure to the cutting edge to keep the instrument stable and motionless
3. move the stone up and down with short rhythmical strokes about 1/2" high
4. Place more pressure on the down strokes and maintain the 100 degree angle
5. always finish each area with a down stroke

When ACTIVATING the sharpening stone during the moving flat stone application always remember to __?

Apply sharpening strokes only to the one selected side and then proceed to sharpen all around the toe

When sharpening an area-specific curet you would __?

1. Place the stone on a steady surface
2. Examine the cutting edges to be sharpened
3. Hold the instrument with the modified pen grasp
4, Apply the cutting edge
5. Sharpen in a series of applications each overlapping to the previous
6. Apply moderate and firm pressure turning continuously
7. Be sure to overlap at the center of the round toe
8. Wipe with a gauze square or an alcohol wipe to remove the wire edge

What is the procedure for sharpening a curet while using the stationary flat stone: moving instrument?


Arkansas stones are __?

coarser grain, tapered, useful for preliminary shaping

Carborundum stones are ___?

arkansas stone

This is a fine-grained sharpening stone quarried from natural mineral deposits.


This means to smooth and polish: an effect that can result when a dull scaler or curet is passed over tenacious calculus in an attempt to remove the deposit


A sharpening stone


Another name for sharpening is __?

rotary stone

A sharpening stone mounted on a metal mandrel for use in a dental hand-piece is called?

testing stick

This is a plastic 1/4" rod that is 3" long and is used to test the sharpness of a scaler or a curet?

110 degrees

What is the cutting angle for a curet using stationary flat stone: moving instrument?

70 - 80 degrees

What is the cutting angle for a scaler or a sickle using the stationary flat stone, moving instrument technique?

Internal angle of 70 - 80 degrees and visible angle of 110 degrees

What is the cutting angle when using moving flat stone - stationary instrument?

dry or with water

Ceramic stones may be used __ or __?

Arkansas and Ruby stone

2 Types of mandrel mounted stones are?


Always discard instruments with __ blades.

often and lightly

Sharpen your instruments ___ and ___.

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