The virus spreads very easily and quickly through infected surfaces and people. And, if someone has it then a patient can easily transmit it to a dentist, or the other way around. Both you and your dentist have extra work to do to stay safe during COVID-19.
You’ll find several key pieces of advice for maintaining dental health during a time when the world is practicing social distancing.
Reschedule Non-essential Procedures
While it’s never recommended to be late on regular dental check-ups, for the sake of social distancing it’s best to wait on those appointments that can wait.
If you’ve consistently gone to your regular 6-month checkup, you perhaps can afford to push the appointment down a few months. As long as there are no pressing issues with your dental health, your dentist will most likely suggest staying home instead.
But emergency treatments should be scheduled promptly. If there is an active infection in your mouth, such as through an impacted tooth or an injury, your risk of contracting COVID-19 and any other infectious virus or disease increases.
When managing appointments with your dentist’s office, make sure to reschedule as necessary, and be understanding if your dentist is not taking patients at this time. Some offices are closing altogether for the time being, so you can ask for recommendations in regards to essential treatments that cannot wait.
Stay Home if You Are Sick
Whether or not a treatment is essential, patients must stay home if they show symptoms of COVID-19. You might be able to receive dental treatment in the hospital while in quarantine. But the risk of infecting multiple people is too high to get any treatment done.
If you’ve been tested for COVID-19 and are negative, your dentist office might request proof as a courtesy. This allows dentists to ensure a clean and safe procedure every time for you and the rest of their patients.
Even in the Office, Practice Social Distancing
Social distancing guidelines call for at least six feet of space between people in public spaces. When entering the dentist office you may see chairs removed in the waiting area, or tape marks showing where people should stand to maintain social distancing guidelines.
It’s all new to everyone involved, and every establishment that is open implements social distancing differently. It could be in the form of only allowing one patient at a time to wait in the waiting room, or closing waiting rooms altogether. Whatever the measure, know that any operational changes at your dentist office are strictly to keep you and every other patient, staff member, and dentist safe.
We’re In This Together
The whole world is reeling from the coronavirus epidemic, and there’s certainly no point in almost anyone’s lives that hasn’t been impacted by it. As dentist offices learn how to navigate the pandemic alongside patients, there should always be one thing that is top of mind – help keep yourself and others safe during these trying times, and we’ll all be better off on the other side. From Hitek Dental to you and yours, be safe.