Indoor air quality in wards of dental school clinic: Variations of VOCs, CO2 and airborne particle levels
Introduction: The indoor environment of dental clinics may endanger dental patients and personnel and due to a great variety of air pollutants throughout the usual dental operation. The purpose of the present cross-sectional study was the evaluation of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) and factors affecting it in a dentistry faculty of Arak University of Medical Sciences.
Material and methods: The IAQ of five dental active wards and the patient waiting room was evaluated. The concentrations of Total Volatile Organic Compounds (TVOC), CO2, particulate matter, and bioaerosols were measured.
Results: The TVOCs concentration in sampling locations ranged between 817 to 3670 μg/m3 during dental work and exceeded the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) guideline in all sampling locations. The highest values of Particulate Matter (PM) for PM10, PM2.5, and PM1 were observed in the periodontics ward, while the lowest values were observed in the endodontics ward. The PM2.5 concentrations exceeded the WHO limit in periodontics and pediatric wards. TVOC levels had a significant positive correlation with temperature (r=0.374, p<0.01) and RH (r=0.265, p<0.05). The predominant bacterial genus of the patient waiting area was Bacillus (36%), while the dominant bacterial genus of the other sampling site was Micrococcus spp. Penicillium (35.5%) and Cladosporium (28%) were the predominant fungi detected.
Conclusion: Controlling of airborne particles is to be standardized by the infection control actions of dental clinics and improved ventilation capacity in the air conditioning system was suggested for reducing VOCs and PM concentrations.