Our Banff Environmental Initiative
Our Commitment to the Environment:
We are proud to be doing our part to preserve, protect and nurture our surroundings.
At bite – Family Dentistry we are proud that our patients come to our office because we take care of their oral health and cosmetic dental needs. But we are also pleased that our patients appreciate the commitment we have pledged to create a healthy office space for our patients and staff to enjoy and further, that we take significant steps to minimize our impact on the environment.
At bite – Family Dentistry, significant efforts were taken to design, build, decorate and operate a dental office that provides full-service care to our patients, looks attractive and is environmentally responsible without compromising on sterility, safety and patient care. By incorporating the latest technology, materials and innovations, while at the same time making choices that help preserve and protect our natural surroundings, we hope to be an example of how we can provide excellent patient care with a reduced ecological footprint.
We hope that you will take the time to review this section of the bite – Family Dentistry website and learn about our environmentally responsible choices.
Learn More About our Environmentally Responsible Office Design:
We use Marmoleum flooring for the majority of the rooms in our office.
Marmoleum is a product that is fabricated using renewable, natural ingredients. Marmoleum is biodegradable and helps create a healthier indoor environment. Naturally occurring anti-microbial properties inhibit the growth of many micro-organisms, including allergen producing dust mites and the MRSA strains of bacteria.
All walls in the office have been painted with low VOC paints. This creates a healthier environment for our staff and patients because it contributes to the indoor air quality of the office.
Decorative Resin Panels
The beautiful decorative resin panels we used in our office design are made of a unique product called ecoResin by 3 Form. They are made with 40% recycled materials and elements directly from nature. They are also Greenguard Indoor Air Quality Certified.
All toilets in the office are high-efficiency and low-flow, meaning they flush using less water than traditional toilets.
Bite – Family Dentistry uses LED lights chair-side in all of its operatories as well as in hallways and reception and some decorative lighting. All of these fixtures use less energy, last longer and generate less heat than traditional halogen or incandescent lights.
Dry Dental Vacuum Saves on Water Use
Traditionally, dentists have used wet vacuums that operate using water to run the suction lines. The amount of water a wet vacuum will go through is significant. At bite – Family Dentistry, we use a dry dental vacuum system. The dry vacuum has all the same benefits and purposes of the wet vacuum, with the added benefits that it uses no water and it is much more energy efficient in its operation.
At bite – Family Dentistry, our fillings are mercury-free. However, many of our patients have older fillings made out of an amalgam of silver and mercury. When these fillings are removed, it is important that the mercury be captured and disposed of properly to avoid contamination of water sources. We have installed an amalgam separator that prevents the mercury in older fillings from going into the sewage system thus protecting our waterways. The mercury is collected and disposed of in an environmentally responsible manner.
Reception Area Chairs
The chairs in our reception area and consult room are made by Knoll and are GREENGUARD Indoor Air Quality Certified® and GREENGUARD Children & Schools certified. They are made with 40% recycled content.
Children’s Play Area
The desk/storage area in our kid’s section is made by Way-Basics which uses no formaldehyde or VOC’s in its manufacturing process. They also use a water-based glue that is completely environmentally friendly, and recyclable too. The boards are made almost entirely (99%) from post-consumer recycled paper.
Some of the office furniture we have chosen is made in Canada from 90% recycled materials.
X-rays are an important part of early detection and proper diagnosis of oral disease. At bite – Family Dentistry, we only use digital x-rays that expose patients to 70-90% less radiation than traditional dental x-rays. In addition, digital x-rays do not generate chemical waste that is harmful to the environment.
Digital Patient Charts
At bite – Family Dentistry, our patient charts are electronic. This means that our patient dental records, x-rays, digital photos and other items relating to each patient’s care are saved in digital format. This saves a tremendous amount of paper and has the additional benefits of being safer (e.g. because the records are replicable in the event of theft, fire, vandalism and natural disasters), legible, sanitary, quickly accessible by authorized staff and yet, also secure due to modern encryption technologies.
While we aspire to be almost completely paperless, once in a while, it is necessary to use paper in the office. On these occasions, we strive to use recycled paper products.
Many of the day-to-day environmentally responsible features of bite – Family Dentistry aren’t readily apparent to our patients but taken together, they have a significant environmental and health impact. Some other steps we are taken to reduce our ecological footprint include:
• Steam (rather than chemical) sterilization
• Re-usable/sterilizable tips for high-volume suction
• Bio-degradable, recyclable and/or re-fillable office supplies
• Eco-friendly cleaning supplies
• Telephone and electronic appointment reminders (rather than mailed reminders)
• Electronic patient communications
• Bulk supply purchases (e.g. prophy paste in bulk containers rather than single-use disposable packages)
• Office recycling program
• Supporting environmental causes such as the WWF Canada, Nature Conservancy of Canada, among other local charities.
Word-of-mouth marketing – if you like what we are doing at bite – Family Dentistry, tell your friends and family about us!