Dentists to replace drills with plasma jets

I can’t believe how great this idea sounds. Instead of using the old-school (as in patented in 1875) drill technology to remove cavities, researchers are developing a method of using something called cold plasma to destroy the bacteria. I love the idea because I absolutely hate the sound of that damnable drill.

The benefits are huge. The drill is not only loud, but it’s extremely invasive and damaging, and can actually cause more problems then it solves. Researchers have discovered a way to make something called “cold plasma” which will actually sterilize a tooth instead of grinding out the damaged tissue. To be honest, researchers aren’t entirely sure exactly how the plasma works to destroy the bacteria, but they are able to determine that a burst of about 12-18 seconds will completely eliminate the problem. It would also be painless, so to a wuss like me it sounds like a great solution.

The researchers working on this technology expect that it could be available in a general dentistry application in about 3-5 years. I know I can’t wait.

[via Slashdot]