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Page updated 9 October 2006

Sterilisation of Dental Instruments and Equipment

Key Points

Decontamination is a combination of processes including cleaning, sterilisation or disinfection and storage used to render a reusable item safe

Disinfection: reduces the microbial load to level, which makes the disinfected object safe to handle

Sterilisation: killing and removal of all microorganisms including bacterial spores