Vol. 4, Issue 3 (2017)
Solid waste disposal and management in dentistry
Author(s): Dr. Siddharth, Dr. Sourab Kumar, Dr. Abhishek Jadhav, Dr. Payoshnee Bhalinge, Dr. Aswathy Pillai, Dr. Rupali Wakode
Abstract: Waste disposal is an important, yet relatively neglected issue in Public Health. Waste management is crucial for proper growth, development and health of citizens. Proper waste disposal is one of the major responsibilities of the community as a whole. Historically, waste disposal has been a global problem. It has even resulted in the rise and fall of an American President. In France, excess waste accumulation resulted in difficulty in defense. Various diseases including cholera, typhoid fever, Bubonic Plague have affected Europe as a result of improper waste management. On an average, man generates about 500 grams solid waste anywhere between 100 – 150 liters of sewage each day and about 1.3 billion tons of municipal waste is generated annually globally. In urban India, about 55 million tons of solid and 38 billion liters of sewage are generated and are expected to grow at a rate of 1-1.33% annually. India also produces nearly 960 million tons of solid waste as by – products of industry, mining municipal, agricultural and other procedures. The importance of waste disposal is of concern for health workers/ managers as waste can be hazardous to health, both at its point of generation and when not disposed and managed within safety regulations framework. Epidemics, toxicity in the environment, disability, and injuries are a few to state which have been caused by mismanagement of the biomedical and other wastes. Boom in health industry including the oral care industry has brought to light that apart from the regular bio-wastes, dental wastes like mercury, amalgam disposal need to be paid serious attention. This paper explores the methods of disposal for solid waste and bio – medical/dental waste and describes methods of its disposal along with the challenges faced by communities for waste disposal. The roles of authorities and regulatory boards and public health researchers in evolving newer initiative too have been discussed.