Plugged in for Success: Electric Handpieces are the Future. Here’s Why.

by Lou Shuman, DMD, CAGS, CEO and Founder of Cellerant Consulting

I know that quite a number of dentists remain committed to air-driven handpieces. It was what you used in school. You have established clinical workflows in place with equipment you trust.

What I also know is that no matter how long you’ve been practising, whether you’re a high-tech CEREC user or still mixing up alginate, whether you practise in a town of 10,000 or in Toronto – electric handpieces can raise your game. Chances are, you know, and respect, a colleague using electric. Maybe you’ve wondered, “Why do they love it and I don’t? Is it electrics or is it me?”

It isn’t you! When electrics first came on the scene they were heavier, the learning curve was pretty steep, and they were expensive. Trust me when I say that so much has changed! In our current moment, with emphasis on safety, I saw the significant value they bring to dentists and patients alike in reducing aerosol spray. But in speaking with practitioners, I was reminded of how much value they bring even when we aren’t dealing with a pandemic:

  • Consistent torque for improved cutting performance – a game-changer with modern materials like zirconia.
  • Versatility for the ways practices are growing and changing. With the right motor combination, the electric handpiece can be your go-to for a wide range of procedures, including restorative, endo and surgical.
  • Quieter, cooler and more efficient, electrics make the patient experience infinitely better.

To be fair, this is a column, not a book, as it would take much more time to go into the many benefits that electric handpieces deliver. As the workhorse of the practice, handpieces aren’t usually viewed as a “high tech” purchase, but companies like Bien-Air are changing that dynamic, bringing in not only world-class design and precision engineering, but also smart features that demonstrate someone was really listening to what the dentist needs. Their iOptimaINT set was recently awarded its 7th – yes, their 7th – Best of Class Technology Award. It is the only handpiece company to earn that distinction. This is not a Bien-Air commercial, but a testament to the fact that there are handpiece companies who are committed to innovation in important ways.
You don’t have to finish this column a believer, but trust me when I say an electric handpiece demo is well worth your time.

Editor’s Note: A version of this article originally appeared in the October 2020 issue of Dental Economics. It is with their permission that it was repurposed for a new audience.

RELATED ARTICLE: Gamechangers For 2020, a Different Perspective