, MPH, RDH
When it comes to scaling, I am burnished calculus’s worst nightmare. I find few things as rewarding as removing calculus that has been hiding under the patient’s gums. As dental professionals, we know that the burnished calculus can lead to periodontal disease. Over the last few years, I have found an increasing amount of residual subgingival calculus that is often burnished. I attribute this to improper technique, neglecting to implement an 11/12 explorer, improper working ends, reduced clinical time, and well-intentioned concern for patient comfort. With the intention of not becoming the “mean hygienist” in the office, I began my pursuit of finding a topical anesthetic. My research led me to Gingicaine, an anesthetic gel that works quickly, tastes great, and patients love.
• Active ingredient: 20% benzocaine gel
• Uses: Reduce pain or discomfort caused by minor dental procedures, minor gum injuries, canker sores, and minor mouth or gum irritations caused by dentures or orthodontic appliances.1
• Contraindications: Should not be used in patients with history of hypersensitivity to ester-like anesthetics, or on severely traumatized mucosal areas that are infected. Do not use on patients who are allergic to “-caine” anesthetics or FD&C Red 40.1
• Ordering: Gingicaine can be ordered through major distributors and comes in a strawberry-flavored gel. Gingicaine gel syringes are available in kits containing 20 syringes each with 1.2 mL of benzocaine gel and 40 micro needle tips.