It can be very frustrating to take a series of dental photos only to realize there were scratches or watermarks on the mirrors when you review the images later on a computer. Cleaning mirrors without damaging them can be a challenge.
I happen to like the [chromium or titanium] coated buccal, lingual, occlusal and anterior contact Intraoral Handle Mirrors from PhotoMed®. These feature a stainless steel handle that keeps fingertips out of the photograph. And, if your patient is cooperative, they can hold the mirror to free up your assistant. All of the handle mirrors from PhotoMed are single-sided, autoclavable, and can be cold sterilized.
In my practice, we try to protect our mirrors as much as possible from scratches, because once they happen, there is nothing you can do about it. Watermarks, on the other hand, can be eliminated and also cleaned away.
To avoid watermarks, we always wrap our mirrors in a paper towel before putting them in the autoclave bag. To clean away fingerprints and water spots, we use premoistened lens cleaning wipes that are designed for cleaning eyeglasses. They can be purchased in bulk, and we find them economical, efficient, and effective in cleaning our intraoral mirrors for crisp intraoral photo images. We keep a box in every operatory, where they do double duty in cleaning our eyeglasses and loupes.