Air abrasion was developed to remove decay with a pressurized stream of microscopic abrasive powder. The powder is made of aluminum oxide particles. Air abrasion offers an alternative to the high-speed hand piece (dental drill) for some simple procedures, especially in children. It is very quiet and produces much less heat of vibration compared to a dental handpiece. Some small cavities can be prepared without the need for local anesthesia. It is intended for use on the chewing surface or the outside area of the tooth.