Is it Universal Precautions or Standard Precautions?

In the late 1980’s about the time HIV and AIDS were the big scare across our nation with stories like Ryan White consuming headlines in the local and national media. People were terrified. In response there were advancements in ways healthcare workers options to protect themselves from “blood and certain bodily fluids”.

By the mid-1990’s the rationale shifted to the idea that healthcare workers need to protect themselves from “blood, bodily fluids and mucous membranes” or what we now refer to as Blood and Other Potentially Infectious Materials (BOPIM). The term Standard Precautions is the updated terminology that is commonly used interchangeably with Universal Precautions.

Does it really matter what you call the proper use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)? Depends on who you ask. I say as long as you know and wear what you need to when you need to it does not matter. I’m just keepin’ it real!

Unprotected dentistry, like unprotected sex, should be avoided. Unlike the ‘olden’ days when penicillin would cure anything, the ‘funk’ (disease) is growing stronger and is developing immunity to standard treatments. Today’s ‘funk’ can kill. Don’t let that funk kill you. Practice protected dentistry.

That’s it for today. Stay tuned for additional posts on Infection Control. Be sure to share this with your friends and colleagues on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ or by e-mail.


We’ll talk again soon!