Modernizing Water Safety for Today’s DSO

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Make Managing Dental Water Easier

Water is the #1 ‘instrument’ used within DSOs’ practices. It touches everything that matters:

  • It is involved in almost every procedure.
  • Patients and staff are exposed to it every day.
  • It impacts the operation and maintenance of equipment.
  • It is then sent into the environment and the community water supply.

Dental Water is a Connected Ecosystem

Understanding dental unit waterline management is essential for a practice’s health and plays a pivotal role in all aspects of dental care.  Maximizing water’s efficiency involves treating it as an interconnected system rather than individual components.

Dental water’s biology and chemistry ultimately affect the health of patients and staff. From waterlines to pumps, valves, handpieces, and more, the water system needs to be kept in balance. Whether it is bacteria and biofilm (human health), or chemical balance of ions and dissolved solids (equipment health), when the water is better, everything works better.

Your water system needs to be managed in totality. Any disruption in the balance of the water system could have monumental and detrimental effects on your patients, teams, equipment, and ultimately the bottom line of your DSO.

Until recently, manufacturers primarily offered separate components, lacking a comprehensive approach to optimize patient safety and practice productivity. Since water performs much better when managed as a total system, the need for a holistic water management solution should not be underestimated. 

A dental water system can be broken down into six component solutions:

  1. Source Water Quality
  2. Dental Unit Waterline Management
  3. Isolation and Aerosol Control
  4. Evacuation
  5. Amalgam Capture and Recycling
  6. Waste Management

Dental Unit Waterline Management Challenges

Remarkably, a standard 10-chair practice utilizes around 125,000 gallons of water year. Such massive water usage demands the group dental industry pay attention to maintaining safe, quality, compliant water. But in doing so, additional challenges are presented:

  • Source water quality is declining.
  • Regulations are on the rise.
  • Staffing shortages jeopardize the integrity of water systems.

Despite sincere efforts, 31% of dental unit water tests still fail, often without a clear understanding of why (as nature exerts its influence).

Water quality, safety, and compliance present significant challenges for DSOs, particularly in light of the current staffing crisis facing the dental industry. Dental unit waterline management is a substantial consumer of staff resources, and maintaining it effectively is becoming increasingly difficult. For instance, utilizing conventional iodine straws involves 258 steps per year, per chair, amounting to thousands of hours annually.

Dental Unit Waterline Management Solutions

The introduction of Silver Ion technology into dentistry represents a groundbreaking innovation. This proprietary use of silver, a well-established disinfectant in industrial water treatment systems, ensures consistent and highly efficient bacteria eradication within dental unit water bottles.

The Silver Ion technology, incorporated into a dental unit straw, offers year-long protection for each chair, surpassing the efficacy of commonly used iodine straws. This not only enhances the chances of success but also yields substantial time savings by simplifying daily maintenance procedures.

The streamlining of daily tasks reduces the risk of errors, leading to improved job satisfaction for dental assistants, who view this innovation as a game changer. Given the staffing challenges faced by the dental industry, such advancements can be a significant asset.

Provide Your DSO Teams Simple, Efficient Tools for Success 

One company is fully dedicated to addressing the challenges associated with maintaining water quality, safety, and compliance in dental practices. Solmetex is the only provider of a complete, end-to-end system of water solutions in the dental office.

Solmetex has consolidated multiple companies under its banner, including Solmetex (amalgam separation and recycling), Sterisil (a water quality and safety leader), and DryShield (offering modern isolation solutions). This consolidation provides a comprehensive, end-to-end dental water solution, making dental water management more manageable.

Their Sterisil system drastically reduces the steps needed for DUWL maintenance, reducing staff burden and increasing productivity. Using Sterisil reduces steps from 258 annually per operatory to only one step. That translates into a considerable time savings and reduces stress for team members.

Sterisil is a powerful non-oxidizing Silver Ion technology that is 20x more effective (10 CFU vs 200 CFU), ensuring water safety and compliance. It eliminates these problems:

  • Waterline tests that fail more than 30% of the time
  • Patient complaints about the foul taste and odor of dental water
  • Worrying about waterline contamination risk with unstable iodine treatments.

Dental water is an interconnected system, where each part can influence the next as water flows throughout the practice. Solmetex’s aim is to ensure safe, high-quality water within, throughout, and beyond the dental practice. Their end-to-end solution incorporates arguably the finest products for each step in the process.

Solmetex’s goal is to simplify the work of dental staff and enhance the safety and productivity of the practice. They recognize the complexity of this field and aim to educate individuals about the interplay of its various components. Managing it as a cohesive system, supported by top-tier solutions, not only enhances safety but also boosts practice productivity.

The Complete EPA Regulatory Compliance Solution for Special Markets

The Solmetex Compliance Center was uniquely designed in partnership with one of the largest DSOs in the country to provide dental group organizations with a tool to manage EPA Dental Rule compliance across all their dental practices nationwide.

  • Solmetex Compliance Center: Account management portal that provides real-time compliance data across all the practices in your network.
  • Recycling Overview: Overall history of amalgam separator installation, plus recycling history of collection container and amalgam waste buckets across all practices.
  • Solmetex Compliance Program: Maintain compliance nationwide by setting custom delivery schedules through your dealer/distributor partner.
  • Custom Territory Views: Custom account log in with the views that fit your group’s needs. National, regional, or individual office logins allow you to manage your locations.
  • Account Reporting: Export dental practice account data to your desktop in Excel or PDF formats.
  • Certificates of Compliance: Access to product shipping labels, Certificates of Installation and Certificates of Recycling, available 24/7/365 at NO CHARGE.

Contact Solmetex Group Account Directors: 

Steve Craig, Director, Special Markets East, 630-258-2012,

Mike Woolley, Director, Special Markets West, 203-952-6975,