What Are Dental Handpieces?

Dental handpieces are essential tools used by dentists and dental professionals during various dental procedures. They are precision instruments designed to cut, polish, shape, and remove dental tissues, such as enamel and dentin, as well as to perform other dental tasks. Dental handpieces come in several types, each designed for specific functions.

What are the Types of Dental Handpieces?

Dental handpieces come in several types, each designed for specific functions. Here are the main types of dental handpieces:

High-Speed Handpieces

High-speed handpieces, also known as "air-driven" or "turbine" handpieces, operate at very high rotational speeds, typically ranging from 300,000 to 400,000 revolutions per minute (RPM) or more. They are primarily used for procedures requiring precision cutting, such as cavity preparation, crown and bridge work, and tooth shaping. High-speed handpieces use compressed air to power a turbine that drives the cutting bur or attachment.

Low-Speed Handpieces

Low-speed handpieces operate at lower rotational speeds, typically ranging from 5,000 to 40,000 RPM. They are versatile tools used for various procedures, including polishing, finishing restorations, removing decay, and placing dental fillings. Low-speed handpieces may have attachments for different tasks, such as contra-angles for precise cutting and straight handpieces for polishing.

Ultrasonic Scalers

Ultrasonic scalers use high-frequency vibrations to remove plaque, tartar, and stains from the teeth. They are commonly used for dental cleanings and periodontal treatments. Ultrasonic scalers are gentler on tooth surfaces than traditional hand instruments and can make dental cleanings more comfortable for patients.

Electric Handpieces

Electric handpieces use an electric motor to generate rotational power. They are known for their consistent torque and precise control, making them suitable for a wide range of dental procedures, from restorations to endodontic treatments. Electric handpieces can operate at both high and low speeds, offering versatility.