A dental dam (rubber dam) is a small sheet of rubber used to isolate teeth being worked on. It fits over your teeth, has holes in it which are matched to the teeth being worked on, and is secured with a clamp and a frame.
At HBDS, we use a rubber dam routinely when placing composite fillings, during root canal treatments, sealants and inlays or onlays. The isolation keeps saliva off the teeth and the area dry and contaminant free. This is critical in the long-term success of dental restorations. It also helps keep the mouth open and the tongue out of the way as well as protecting the patient from swallowing any falling debris. During the removal of old silver fillings containing mercury, the rubber dam also forms a protective shield over the patient, reducing the risk of mercury exposure.
If you have never experienced a rubber dam, it may feel a little awkward at first. Only in very rare circumstances do we find that someone is unable to wear a rubber dam. Always remember, we take the extra time and effort to use the rubber dam to make your experience comfortable.