Profissionais a exercer na medicina dentária: principais fatores de risco e riscos laborais, doenças profissionais associadas e medidas de proteção recomendadas

Translated title of the contribution: Dental medicine workers: main labor factor risks and risks, associated professional diseases and recommended protective measures

M. Santos, T. Oliveira, A. Almeida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review



Introduction / objectives In dental care institutions there are usually dentists (general practitioners and/ or specialists), dental assistants, receptionists and sometimes managers. The main risk factors/ occupational risks of the former are the possible contact with biological agents; maintained/ forced postures, repetitive movements and vibrations; noise; electromagnetic radiation and visual effort to use screens with frequency; ionizing radiation by Rx and chemical agents. The other professional classes mentioned above are subject to electromagnetic radiation, visual effort, maintained seated posture and repetitive movements. There are a fair amount of published work on occupational health in this sector, but the generality of these addresses specific aspects, and it is not easy to find a global perspective of the subject, minimally complete and succinct. This review intends to better understand the risk/ risk factors in this professional sector. Methodology This is an Integrative Bibliographic Review, initiated through a survey conducted in December 2017 in the databases “CINALH plus with full text, Medline with full text, Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Cochrane Methodology Register, Nursing and Allied Health Collection: comprehensive, MedicLatina, Academic Search Complete and RCAAP “.Content The most relevant biological agents in this context are hepatitis B and C viruses, as well as HIV. In several tasks these professionals remain for prolonged periods in maintained and/ or forced postures (sitting, standing and almost static, although with some repetitive movements associated and sometimes without adequate pauses).In this professional sector there is relevant exposure to noise. The instruments with higher decibel levels were the high-speed turbine and the compressor; dental pens, the air compressor, the vacuum cleaner, the amalgamator and the air conditioning units themselves. Of all the chemical agents used so far, mercury is the most relevant. In some contexts there is exposure to Rx. Conclusions None of the selected articles mentioned collective protection measures directly. However, in this context, the use of the least toxic chemical agents, a good ergonomic design of the work station, the use of equipment that emits the least possible noise and vibration, the rotation of tasks and the appropriate training of professionals. At the level of personal protective equipment are mentioned the use of long-sleeved gown, visor or glasses, hat and gloves of latex. Work accidents in this sector are mainly justified by the small work field, the use of sharp instruments and/ or high speed work, with the creation of aerosols and splashes being fairly frequent, as well as physical proximity to the client and/ or the sudden movements that it may have. The part of the body generally most affected by short-piercing accidents is the finger; the needles should never be recapsulated with the other hand holding the cap, nor should the needles be reused, bent or broken. None of the articles consulted focused on occupational diseases; however, a variety of musculoskeletal pathologies, infectious diseases (HIV, hepatitis B and C, above all), various oncological issues, and emotional level, anxiety, depression and burnout are highlighted at this level. It would be pertinent to develop investigations that evaluate the national reality.
Translated title of the contributionDental medicine workers: main labor factor risks and risks, associated professional diseases and recommended protective measures
Original languagePortuguese
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalRevista Portuguesa de Saúde Ocupacional
Issue numberS
Publication statusPublished - 12 Mar 2018


  • Occupational health
  • Worker health
  • Occupational medicine
  • Dentist
  • Dental assistant


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