Dentist Revolutionizes Centuries-Old Tool with Innovative Redesign
Dentistry has witnessed significant advancements over the years, but there's one tool that has remained virtually unchanged for over a century. That is, until now.
Dentist Tammy Del Sol, owner of Colonial Dental Group in Harrisburg, has reinvented the traditional dental mirror, addressing a long-standing issue faced by dental professionals. Fueled by personal necessity, Del Sol, who also happens to be an inventor, embarked on a mission to improve the comfort and functionality of this indispensable tool.
"The dental mirror I used was the same one my father used when he started practicing in the late 1950s," Del Sol shared. However, the repetitive pinch grip required during dental procedures often led to discomfort and hand-related issues, eventually leading to Del Sol undergoing surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Del Sol seized the opportunity to find a solution to this problem. After months of research and experimentation, she devised a star-shaped grip design for the dental mirror. The revamped tool has garnered positive feedback from dental assistants and hygienists, who reported enhanced comfort and improved posture during procedures.
Del Sol's innovation extends beyond dentistry. She envisions her star-shaped grip concept being utilized in other medical fields as well. Drawing inspiration, Del Sol introduced the "star scalpel," a surgical tool that allows surgeons to make precise cuts with ease, eliminating the need for excessive arm movement.
Recognizing the potential impact of her invention, Del Sol secured a place in the prestigious Penn State Ben Franklin TechCelerator program. Her pitch for the star scalpel earned her second place from the judges and first place in the people's choice vote, resulting in an $11,000 prize. Del Sol plans to utilize the funds to develop prototypes and initiate beta testing with a group of 30 local surgeons.
Del Sol's groundbreaking redesign of the dental mirror and scalpel, the first of its kind in 130 years, is set to revolutionize dental and surgical practices not only in the Midstate region but potentially worldwide. With excitement building among professionals who eagerly anticipate the widespread adoption of her invention, Del Sol expressed her anticipation for witnessing others benefit from her creation.
Reflecting on the delayed discovery of this innovation, Del Sol candidly admitted, "That is the question I hear so often. I have no idea." However, her achievement marks a significant milestone for her and the dental community, showcasing the power of perseverance and ingenuity in reimagining essential tools for the betterment of patient care.