Recently, an 82 year old Italian woman died after contracting Legionaire's Disease from her dentist's units. While hot water systems, air conditioning systems, spas, and fountains are the most common sources of infection, dental unit water lines can also be a culprit.
Biofilm in the water lines can create an environment in which Legionella bacteria can exist and proliferate, so it's vital to ensure your unit's water supply is consistently clean. To ensure that you're up-to-date on best practices, please visit the ADA and review their Statement on Dental Unit Waterlines. The main recommendations for improving water quality at this time are the following:
- Independent water reservoirs
- Chemical treatment regimens
- Source water treatment systems
- Daily draining and air purging regimens
- Point-of-use filters