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Problems dentists face in waste management

What are the biggest problems that surround the topic of hazardous waste in dentistry?

2 min read

Working as a dentist in Australia can come with its fair share of challenges, especially when COVID-19 remains a very real and ongoing concern (by the way, have you ever wondered where the COVID-19 waste goes?) Undoubtedly, waste management is a salient issue for the dental industry, for reasons of compliance alongside health waste disposal and safety of humans and the environment.

This article explores the predominant problems that surround the topic of hazardous waste in dentistry and effective waste management for dental care providers.


Understanding various waste classifications in waste management

If you are a dental care provider, it’s crucial that you and your team understand the various classifications of waste in order to safely handle waste and segregate it for proper disposal. There are many different types of waste in dentistry.

Clinical and related waste guidance

Clinical and related waste should always be segregated from general waste. General waste may include such items as tissues, cotton wool balls, bandages, bandaids, protective equipment and uniform (all with no free-flowing blood or exposure to infection). You have a responsibility to ensure you are identifying all waste generated in a dental office and dealing with it correctly.

Adhering to compliance stipulations and avoiding penalties


Fines are given to those who are caught breaking waste regulations and this can be crippling for any business. However, the penalties are warranted, because dealing with waste incorrectly often poses significant harm — to both humans and the environment. To find out more, you can read a blog that delves into the many harmful effects that can arise due to the incorrect disposal of waste.

Achieving sustainable waste management

To eliminate any remaining confusion as to ‘what waste goes where’, your best course-of-action is always to call in a waste disposal facility that holds the authority to provide you with guaranteed guidance in waste segregation protocol. This helps to lay the best foundation for compliant and sustainable waste management for you and your dental practice.

Reducing costs and maximising efficiencies

Yet another of the problems dentists face in their waste management is keeping costs down and efficiencies high. A good way to handle this is to implement a waste management plan, as guided by a waste audit. This will help you to save money in the long run whilst looking after your business and the environment.

What is a waste audit?

A waste audit is a systematic process based on evidence. When conducted by qualified personnel, this process will compare your actual practice against gathered documented and photographic evidence, based on required compliance standards of all relevant Government departments and legislators.

Are you a provider in the dental care industry looking to overcome one or more of the above problems? Talk to the experts at Ace Waste for the right guidance and comprehensive waste management services today.