HIV - Prevention Expert Forum
Risk at the dentist / Hiv
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This forum is limited to prevention of HIV and to safe sex in general. All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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Risk at the dentist / Hiv

Hello Doctor,

I'm worried about a situation that happened at the dentist.  I rinced my mouth with a used cup of water and my gyms were bleeding after a deep cleaning.  I'm sure that the cup were used after seeing some yellow stain on it.  After that, I'm also worried about the quality of the general cleaning of the others instruments. Am I at risk for HIV and Hepatitis C ?  One thing reassume me is the time between me and the other patient (around an hour).  If the HIV cannot survive on the cup or in the water, can HIV survive on the others instruments for an hour ? Should I be tested ?  Sorry for the mistakes, english is not my first language ...

Thanks for your help
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Welcome to our Forum.  I'll be happy to comment.  I sincerely doubt that your dentist is re-using equipment without cleaning it.  This would be most improper.  Even if they did however your risk for HIV, hepatitis. Or other STDs is extraordinarily low, both because it is unlikely that the person seen before you was infected, because the viruses die quickly on exposure to the environment.

I would not worry and see no need for testing.   I hope you find this comment reassuring.  EWH
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Thank you Doctor for your answer. You told me to not be worried because HIV die quickly on exposure to the environment (is it the same in water that on objects?),  I'm just confused about the fact that all the equipments must be sterilized before to be reuse and the HIV duration outside the body.  

I'm anxious because I'm trying to get pregnant and I don't want to infect neither my baby nor my husband.

Thanks for your comment and helpful informations.
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Actually pure water kills HIV immediately on contact. The virus breaks apart.  

Hope this clarifies things.  EWH
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This Forum's Experts
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
University of Washington
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Edward W Hook, MDBlank
University of Alabama at Birmingham
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