How can I reduce the chance of breakage of the Self-Adjusting File?

As previously noted in the FAQs about the low chance of breakage of the SAF, the chance of breaking the SAF inside the canal is extremely low, and when that happens it is usually very easy to remove.

However, there are several clinical tips that can help reduce the chance of breakage and extend the useable life of the SAF:

  1. Create a proper glidepath – both coronally (coronal funneling by an orifice shaper) and to working length (by Pre-SAF 2 or another #20/.04 glidepath instrument). Make sure that the preparation of the glidepath eliminates gross pulp tissue remnants, which may make it difficult for the SAF to reach working length. More information is available on the Clinical Guidelines.
  2. Following the glidepath preparation, manually verify that the SAF is able to reach working length. Do so according to the instructions in the Clinical Guidelines about the manual verification, to check both the working length compatibility, as well as the vertical axis of the root canal. Insert the SAF manually in a vertical motion, without using clock-winding motions, and if necessary, check several different angles after disengaging the SAF from the canal.
  3. When connecting the SAF to the irrigation tube, adjust the rotation speed by pulling the tube, to a level that assures slow rotation of the SAF.
  4. During the motorized operation, make sure to work only according to the vertical axis and avoid brushing motions. Make sure that your outbound motions are just sufficient to disengage the SAF from the canal walls sufficiently for it to shift position. Any lateral motions of brushing motions will apply unnecessary lateral pressure onto the file.
  5. Choose the right size of SAF. If you choose a 1.5mm file for a canal which is size #35 or larger, the file might not be compressed enough in the canal, might rotate, and subsequently might tear quicker.
  6. Due to its asymmetrical shape of the SAF, in curved canals it may not reach working length in every in-bound stroke of the pecking motions. When you encounter resistance – do not push, as the SAF is not a penetrating tool - but withdraw, let the SAF shift its position, and in other positions the file will be able to reach working length. After a minute or two the narrow curvature will be expended to a level that allows the SAF to reach working length in every position. In case that the SAF shows resistance to pulling, due to an isthmus or a curvature, release it gently and don't pull forcefully.