Our favourite dentistry gadget of all time, The Dental Button, sadly appears to have gone out of production. Here are some alternatives:
Low-Cost Dental Button Alternatives
These may not have quite the same psychological impact as The Dental Button, but they’re a lot cheaper and can work a treat:
- a simple wireless doorbell from somewhere like B&Q
- a dog clicker:
I like to use a button clicker – psychologically it gives my patients a sense of having the power to stop us ‘in the palm of their hand’. Believe it or not I use the type that are used to train dogs! Not very glamorous but patients love it. I also think it’s useful for those who wear powerful loupes/ microscopes who risk missing a subtle hand lift. The clickers I like best are the ‘Viskey’ model. I just remove the key ring/ cord and it sits comfortably in the patient’s hand. I purchased them on amazon. Very cheap and very simple but also very effective! – Niall Neeson BDS
Tip: Button clickers come in a range of colours. Red and orange are best avoided, as they may look too much like a panic button! At just over £1, this must be the cheapest dentistry gadget out there, so get yours while stocks last.
There was a new kit in town!
And it was called Kit Calm. Retailing at €127, it included free worldwide shipping from Spain. Sadly, it looks as if it’s gone the way of all dental buttons, i.e. belly up.
Kit Calm consists of a wireless receiver that emits a light and sound signal when the patient presses a remote control button. It comes with a green kiddie button which emits a cricket sound that can be incorporated into gameplay, and a white adult button, which sounds like an email or mobile phone notification.
When you give the remote control to the person, you give them a feeling of control and empowerment which can be very calming.
Of course, not everyone will feel assertive enough to actually press the button. Also, previous traumatic experiences including sexual abuse may make people freeze in the dental chair. For some helpful tips, visit our loss of control and rest breaks pages.
Here’s a demo:
The receiver uses AAA batteries, which last about 2 or 3 months. Instead of a low battery indicator, Kit Calm has been designed so that the first thing that stops working is the light. That way, you can continue working with the sound only until you get a chance to change the batteries.
The buttons use 23A 12v batteries, which should last for over 2 years.
What do you think about stop buttons? Share your opinions on our forum!