No More Needles – Painless Electric Current to Replace Dentist’s Needles

By: | February 7th, 2016

We all are scared of going to the dentist…the fear of a needle or the frightening sound of a drill is enough to make most of us delay our checkup with the dentist.

But gone are the days of scary drills and needles.

A visit to the dentist will no longer be one of life’s most unpleasant experiences because researchers from the University of São Paulo have developed a new painless way to deliver anesthesia that may soon save you from the dentist’s needles.

The new needle-free anesthetic technique uses a small, painless electric current to deliver anesthesia.

The process, called iontophoresis, involves sending topical anesthetic hydrogels directly into the skin by applying a tiny electric current.

Scientists first added a polymer anesthetic hydrogel to help it stick to the lining of the mouth. After that, two anesthetic drugs – prilocaine hydrochloride and lidocaine hydrochloride – were applied before the current. The result was a fast-acting and long-lasting anesthetic without the use of needles.

This new procedure may save costs, improve patient comfort, and decrease the risks of intoxication and contamination.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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