Can I Get HIV at the Dentist's Office?
Due to the nature of the dental treatment, many people fear that HIV may be transmitted during treatment. Universal standard precautions, as described by the CDC, are used for every patient to prevent the transmission of HIV and other infectious diseases.
These precautions require dentists, dental hygienists, and dental assistants to wear gloves, facemasks, and eye protection and sterilize all handpieces (drills) and other dental instruments for every patient-specific sterilization procedures outlined by the Centers for Disease Control. Items that cannot be sterilized are discarded in special containers. After each patient visit, your dental professionals will discard their gloves, wash their hands, and put on a new pair of gloves for the next patient.
If you're feeling anxious, it can be helpful to spend a few minutes asking your dentist any questions you may have about health and safety precautions. This way, you can put your mind at ease.