What we are doing to keep you safe:
- Screening for symptoms: When you arrive at the office we’ll take your temperature and review possible symptoms to make sure that you are getting the appropriate care.
- Maintain social distancing: You may be asked to wait in your car until you have been screened or a room is ready. In the office we ask that you wear a mask until we begin treatment. There may be a clear screen to separate you from our staff and we may keep you apart from other patients in the reception area and halls.
- Isolate treatment rooms: Some offices will close doors or install drapes to separate your treatment area from hallways or other treatment areas. Special attention is being given to how air circulates and is managed.
- Reduce virus containing aerosols: Offices may utilize new techniques to reduce the amount of aerosol in the air or the amount of virus in the aerosol. This could include the use of rubber dams, special vacuum devices or air filtration units.
- Disinfect thoroughly: Dental offices always take precautions to prevent the spread of disease, but during the pandemic we will be taking extra time to clean surfaces that might be contaminated by airborne viruses. You may also see more disposable barriers protecting surfaces in treatment rooms.
- Monitor your health: After your dental visit you will be asked to report any symptoms that may arise in the weeks following. Dental offices can play a role in stemming community transmission by making sure that you receive prompt testing and treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: I have conditions that can complicate COVID-19. Is it safe for me to come to the dentist?
A: Your dentist may want to take special precautions and start your examination using teledentistry, but if you have needed care contact them to determine the best way for you to be treated. The risk of infection is very low, but they will want to take steps to assure your safety.
Q: Is it OK to get my teeth cleaned?
A: Yes. There are good reasons to prevent problems and reduce oral inflammation. Maintaining your overall health may be the best way to avoid COVID-19 complications.
Q: Don’t all these precautions seem a little over the top?
A: The chances of disease transmission in the dental office are very low so it might seem like all these extra steps aren’t necessary, but your safety is a priority and if we are going to get back to normal we must be extra careful now.
Q: Why is there an extra fee for “infection control?”
A: Many of the changes that offices have had to make have been costly. Some supplies that were routine have gone up in price by 4-5 times. Other supplies were never previously part of the process. While offices are trying to contain costs, it may be necessary to manage these extra costs with an added fee. We expect that eventually costs will come down or be absorbed into the regular fees and be covered by dental benefits plans.