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Teeth tissues are hard structures. As a result, they require specialized equipment to cut them or wear them down.
Therefore, the use of rotary instruments became standard practice in dentistry.
Additionally, although the clinician can rely on a high-speed handpiece to remove caries, the micro motor handpiece is equally essential and handy.
This device operates at a lower speed, which makes it ideal for any procedure that involves the tooth's dentine.
Furthermore, the micro motor handpiece is the only device capable of polishing teeth and restorations.
A micro motor handpiece is a low-speed hand-held device that can be used in numerous dental procedures. Although it is referred to as a low-speed device, it has enough speed and torque to easily cut through the tooth's semi-hard tissues.
It consists of a small motor inside the device that activates a spinning mechanism. This causes the bur that the dentist places at the tip to spin.
However, it is essential to understand that a specialized angled handpiece must be connected to the micro motor handpiece for it to work. Therefore, this device possesses two main elements: the angled handpiece at the top and the micro motor handpiece at the bottom.
The dental micro motor handpieces can be divided into two categories.
● Pneumatic micro motor:
The pneumatic micro motor is the version most commonly found in dental offices. It is air-driven and uses the pressurized air from the dental unit connections to power the mechanism inside the handpiece.
● Electric micro motor:
This version uses electrical currents to power the motor instead of air. These electric micro motors are connected to a control box that the clinician can use to adjust the settings. Through this equipment, dentist or laboratory technicians can increase or decrease the handpiece's speed and torque. Furthermore, the electrical components that activate the micro motor also reside inside the control box.
What the micro motor handpiece can do depends on the handpiece connected at the top. However, they are mainly used to remove dental decay and polish restorations.
The contra-angle handpiece looks and functions similarly to a high-speed handpiece. It can be equipped with a bur to remove caries. However, due to the speed at which it operates, it is mainly used in the tooth's dentine since it is less hard than the enamel.
Furthermore, the contra-angle can also be equipped with polishing cups and discs. This allows the practitioner to polish teeth during dental prophylaxis and restorations.
The straight handpiece is mainly used in laboratory procedures. It can be equipped with mops that allow the practitioner to polish acrylic restorations, such as temporary crowns and dentures. It can also be equipped with special burs or discs to cut metal and acrylic.