Best practice tips from role models in sustainable dentistry

Reading about general ideas and tips for more sustainable habits is all well and good, but are you wondering if they are even applicable to your everyday work at your dental practice? Get inspired by fellow dentist teams to become active in your sustainability journey now. While zero-waste dentistry might not be achievable due to sanitary requirements, less-waste dentistry for sure is. After all, every step counts!

From one dental clinic to another

The following dental teams in Germany have been awarded the quality label “DIE GRÜNE PRAXIS” (The Green Practice) for their successful implementation of innovative and inspiring measures to operate more sustainably. Get in on their “green secrets”!

1. Environmental management representative in the team

Dental clinic “Mundpropaganda” (transl. “word-of-mouth recommendation”)

  • A member of the team is assigned to create awareness of and implement measures for more sustainable workflows with their colleagues.
  • Employees who refrain from traveling to holiday destinations by plane are granted two extra days off.
  • Employees are provided with public transport tickets or bikes for their trips to work.

The little things that matter:

  • Sending back packaging to highlight the need for recyclable packaging.
  • Working with re-usable instruments that can be sterilized.
  • Using ceramic cups and glasses.
  • Using plastic-free toothpaste.
  • Saving paper by digitising processes.

2. Supporting environmental projects

TopDentists Colgone MVZ

  • Involved with numerous projects for the environment and species conservation, e.g., the clinic has had over 2,000 trees planted.
  • Employees receive sponsorships for endangered species.
  • Employees are provided with public transport tickets for their trips to work.
  • All processes in the clinic are digitised – from intra-oral scanning to practice management.

3. Renewable energy

Dr Manfred Wolf & Team

  • Electricity is obtained by their own solar panels.
  • E-cars are used for all work trips.

The little things that matter:

  • Setting great value on re-using products and instruments, thereby avoiding single-use items.

4. Modern technology

Robert Stadtkoppel

  • To reduce waste, the team uses a special PTFE foil that can be used multiple times. The goal: a paper-free clinic.
  • Some of the electricity supply is derived from photovoltaic power plants.
  • The clinic is located in a passive house that is built ecologically.

5. Regional suppliers

ZMK Kassel

  • Collaborate with regional suppliers and distributors to minimise transportation routes.
  • Central procurement management to avoid packaging waste and unnecessary trips.

6. Biocompatible materials and recycling

Dr Dörthe Fischer

  • Use of biocompatible materials for dentures, e.g., fillings based on clove oil and use of propolis products.
  • Recycling and use of plastic-free products.

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