a. Team Work. A standard technique to passing instruments is the four-handed
dentistry technique that requires the dental officer and the dental specialist to work as a
team. There are definite steps in passing instruments that must be planned and
practiced in advance:
b. The First Step. The first step is the approach. The dental specialist brings
the new instrument into the zone of operation with his right hand. He then takes the
next instrument to be used in his left hand in a modified pen grasp and holds the
nonworking end of the instrument between the thumb and first two fingers. Then, he
holds the instrument parallel to the one the dental officer is using. See figure 4-10.
Figure 4-10. The approach.
c. The Second Step. The second step is the signal. When the dental officer
has finished using the instrument that he is holding, he lifts the instrument from the tooth
in a fingers-only movement. This is a signal to the dental specialist that the dental
officer has finished using the instrument and is ready for the next instrument. See figure
4-11. The signal may also be verbal, usually when an instrument is desired that is not
in sequence on the prearranged tray.