August, 2020 - Visiting The Dentist During COVID?
Check out this NEW article and video to ease your mind.
YES… It’s SAFE to go to the Dentist!
As the world begins to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, one question that I’m often asked is:
"Do you think it’s safe to go to the Dentist?”
My immediate answer is an overwhelming, “YES!”
Dental offices are one of the SAFEST places you can be. Dentistry is a profession of obsessive-compulsive cleaners.
Dental treatment rooms are cleaned with bactericidal and virucidal cleaners before & after each patient visit.
We utilize barrier protection to prevent germs from spreading when we touch things. All instruments are heat sterilized and used only on you before they are sterilized again. In addition to utilizing many disposable products, we wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the safety of our patients.
Recently, you may have heard about aerosols and their potential danger, especially as it relates to COVID-19. Aerosols are a part of our daily lives. When you speak, cough, sneeze, laugh and breathe, you generate aerosols from your body into the surrounding environment.
Our human bodies have a well-developed immune system to protect us from any potential dangers that we may be exposed to from aerosols.
As it specifically relates to aerosols generated in a dental office, the American Dental Association (ADA) and our local Connecticut State Dental Association (CSDA) have been leaders in helping dental offices remain safe before, during and after the pandemic. With guidelines that have been developed through science and fact, this includes improved safety measures which were developed with both the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA). Dentistry was safe before the COVID-19 outbreak and it remains safe after. To date, there has not been one instance of a COVID-19 outbreak from a dental office, throughout the entire world.
As you know our office remained OPEN during the entire “Shelter in Place” Order, seeing patients for urgent and emergency dental care. As asked by the CDC and ADA we remained open to keep the burden on the Hospital Emergency Rooms down, and we refrained from elective care during this time to conserve PPE.
Our patients who have been here, as well as our dental team members, felt safe the entire time. In fact, the patients who came in all felt extremely comfortable receiving care at our office.
Since the pandemic began, dental offices (including ours) have been taking additional safety measures to protect our patients and our team.
Our office is even going above and beyond by utilization of both intraoral & extraoral aerosol removal devices and improving our air filtration with air purification devices & UV light sterilization.
These additional measures in addition to our regular infection control procedures make our office one of the safest places you can be.
WE WANT YOU TO ALWAYS FEEL COMFORTABLE & SAFE AT OUR OFFICE. In addition, we want our team members to feel safe in our work environment.
As we begin performing routine dental care, you can be assured that our entire team has been in constant communication during the shutdown period, we have studied the latest information & research on how to best care for our patients, and we have implemented additional protocols to keep you, and us, safe during your visit.
There’s a lot of uncertainty when it comes to COVID-19. One thing you can be certain of is that going to the Dentist is, and always has been, safe.
We look forward to seeing you soon. ?
May 20, 2020 Phase 1 Reopening
Connecticut has entered PHASE ONE reopening on May 20th.
Stony Hill Dental Care and Dental offices in Connecticut, are now open for elective restorative procedures, as per the CDC and the Connecticut Department of Health.
This phase will not include dental hygiene appointments. We will continue to treat Urgent and Emergency patients and begin treating patients who had to either reschedule or postpone their restorative appointments due to the COVID-19 shutdown.
Our Second phase will be to reopen our Dental Hygiene Department, on June 15, 2020
Opening the office in stages allows us to keep the patient volume lower and follow our added safety protocols.
We have implemented additional protocols to keep you safe during your visit.
Safer-Lower Volume- Scheduling-and Screening
Thank you so much for your patience and understanding during this time. We appreciate your flexibility and feedback as we move forward together. We will continue to monitor guidance from the State of Connecticut, The CT Department of Health, the CDC, and the ADA. We will make every effort to let you know if this planned phase schedule changes. As always, if you have any questions please give us a call.
BASED ON RECOMMENDATIONS from the Connecticut State Dental Association, ADA and the CDC, we’re temporarily changing the way our practice operates. We recommend that all of our patients check the CDC’s website for information on the coronavirus and what we can do to slow the spread.
Temporary Changes to Our Schedule
WE ARE OPEN FOR DENTAL EMERGENCIES FOR YOU, YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY!
**Our phone lines will remain open for your questions and concerns.
If you are experiencing a dental emergency, please call or text:
We Are Strong When We Work Together
Right now, one of the best ways that we as healthcare professionals can help to slow the spread of coronavirus is to follow the guidance of these health organizations, and we encourage our patients to do the same. We will be sure to update you about additional changes at our practice.
We love all our patients!
At Stony Hill Dental Care, we have always followed standard universal precautions issued by the CDC and ADA to help protect every one of our patients and team members from the many infectious diseases that we are potentially exposed to on a daily basis. For your peace of mind, these are the same precautions we take EVERY time you sit in one of our patient chairs:
In addition to the above standard measures, we will be exercising a higher standard of infection-control in our waiting areas, including removing all magazines, toys, and other items that are difficult to disinfect. And while we love and value each of our patients, handshakes and hugs may be replaced with an "elbow bump" for the time being.
While we are doing everything in our power to protect you, we also ask for your cooperation in making our office environment a safe one when you visit us. If you have a cough, fever, or chills, please call our office to discuss whether or not you should reschedule. We will be checking temperatures on all patients as they enter and anyone with a reading over 99.9 degrees may be asked to reschedule at least three weeks later as a precaution. Also, to practice social distancing and we are limiting our reception room to one person. Please show up no earlier than 10 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment and come alone if possible. Please call or text on your arrival and we will let you know when to come in.
We care about each of you and hope that you and your family will remain in good health during this difficult time.
Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.
Written by Dr. Walter Kostrzewski
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