Partner with oral care supplies company to provide patients samples that have minimal impact on the environment and to encourage a recycling take-back program.
TerraCycle and Colgate have partnered to recycle used toothbrushes and packaging, toothpaste tubes, empty dental floss containers, and toothpaste cartons. The program is completely free to use.
- Sign up for the recycling program (click here)
- Set up a collection box in your office
- When full, ship the box to TerraCycle for free
- The plastic recycled is melted to create new recyclable materials!
Utilize non-toxic hand-hygiene products.
- Utilize alcohol based hand rub that does not contain triclosan.
Triclosan is not properly filtered from waste water treatments and can contaminate streams and be toxic to wildlife. Check a product’s ingredients list for triclosan.
Utilize environmental surface disinfectants.
- Use intermediate-level hospital grade disinfectants that do not contain chemicals harmful to human health after exposure or persist in the environment after disposal.
An intermediate-level disinfectant is a liquid disinfectant with tuberculocidal activity and is registered with the EPA. In dentistry these are used as surface disinfectants. Using an alcohol or water based disinfectant, such as hydrogen peroxide based product that breaks down to oxygen and water, is one example of an environmentally conscious disinfectant.
Utilize environmental cleaning products that are non-toxic and maximize efficiency, infection control, and safety of dental personnel and patients.
- Follow manufacturer’s instructions for proper cleaning procedures, dilution, contact times, and disposal in dental operatory. Following proper instructions maximizes efficiency and prevents overuse and misuse of these products.
Educate patients about sustainability to enhance the dental experience and expand your patient base over time.
- Engage patients in conversations about sustainability in dentistry to encourage sustainable practices in daily life such as reduced water usage while brushing teeth.
- Encourage patients to recycle old toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes, floss containers, and packaging using the TerraCycle recycling program.
- The notion of sustainability will motivate patients to recommend the dental practice to others, therefore increasing the patient base over time