When air-driven handpieces were introduced to the dental world, they revolutionized oral care, giving dentists everywhere the ability to better clean teeth and prepare them for fillings and other restorations. This was over 60 years ago. Technological developments in recent years have seen vast improvements on air-driven handpieces, and have even introduced new instruments. At National Dental Oakland Gardens, our office is equipped with the latest handpieces – electric handpieces.


A dental handpiece is a tool that holds several different types of heads, all of which are designed to perform certain tasks, whether it’s polishing your teeth, or preparing them for crowns or veneers. Electric hand pieces are a technological improvement over air-driven handpieces, relying on electricity for power, instead of a foot pedal and an air turbine. They work at a variety of different speeds, and these speeds determine the functions that the tools can perform. Higher speeds tend to generate more heat, so they are reserved for jobs like polishing ceramic, often performed at 12,000 to 15,000 RPM, or preparing your teeth for restorations. Lower speeds tend to be used for jobs such as root canals or cleaning decay from a cavity. They are also frequently used for polishing composite resin, which is done at 6,000 to 8,000 RPM.


With an air-driven handpiece, a foot pedal is used to achieve, and maintain, the speeds necessary to perform specific functions. There much guesswork involved with this, along with unpredictability. Electric handpieces eliminate a lot of these issues, providing us with the ability to dial in the exact speed we need to perform your procedure. Along with this, we can also preset speeds for procedures we perform more frequently. By simply pushing a button, we can reach the speed we need quickly, which will help your procedure to go that much faster.


Air-driven handpieces tend to slow down when they are cutting through harder materials, such as ceramic. They are likely to stall at lower speeds. Moreover, they may start to become bogged down when they are used for prolonged periods of time. Along with improved speed controls, electric handpieces also provide us with more consistency. They are much less likely to face issues when cutting through hard materials, working at low speeds or when being used for a longer period. No matter what your procedure, the tool will not get bogged down. This helps us to provide you with better quality care.


Many people experience fear or anxiety when it comes to going to the dentist. For some, this fear stems from the loud sounds created by the air turbines of air-driven handpieces. Even with all of the developments over the years, the air turbine still creates a significant amount of noise, and this noise is associated with pain. Electric handpieces create very little noise. If the sound of the older tools has kept you from getting even routine dental care in the past, the reduced noise of the electric handpieces can help to put your mind at ease.

With electric handpieces, we can perform some different procedures quicker and more efficiently, allowing us to greatly improve your oral health. Contact National Dental Oakland Gardens today at (718) 407-0574 to learn more.