The international COVID-19 pandemic has presented us all with brand new challenges, from shopping for essentials, through not being allowed to leave our homes, to not knowing what to expect for our medical needs. As a dental clinic, we faced similar challenges to those of our patients. We didn’t know if it was safe for our staff to be at work and continue to help people, what services it was safe to provide, and if we should keep our clinics open at all. Luckily, we have now all gained a lot more clarity and can answer your questions.
Are dental clinics open in the COVID-19 pandemic?
Yes, dentists offices are open now and we’re happy to welcome our patients back. With that being said, there are a few things that have changed and quite a few new regulations we need to follow.
Below, you’ll find some information on the latest guidelines and what to expect when booking an appointment with us.
There’s a mandatory phone screening for virus symptoms
Currently, we are urged to book every appointment in advance, and walk-in dental visits are discouraged. When you give us a call, our friendly receptionists are obliged by the CDC to ask you questions about symptoms consistent with COVID-19. If you report such symptoms, we need to assess the emergency of your visit and advise against it, if the problem can be managed until you heal or your isolation period is over.
Teledentistry is encouraged
Although we’re not particularly trilled by the idea of teledentistry, it is an option if you need to self-isolate or are feeling sick. If you require teledentistry, please talk to our receptionists describing the problem and they’ll arrange a dentist appointment over the phone.
Not all treatments are possible
To reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19, the CDC recommends that some treatments are postponed. This would often include all cosmetic dentistry (dental contouring, some dental bonding procedures, cosmetic veneers, and others) where the treatment has no health value to the patient. Nonetheless, each case is individual and we strongly urge you to talk to us – a lost veneer or a loose crown may seem cosmetic but is, in fact, a dental risk.
You should come alone to your appointment
If you’ve booked an appointment with us, please come alone unless you have a carer who needs to be there with you. If this is the case, the carer will also need to be screened during the booking phone call for COVID-19 symptoms.
Wear a mark in the clinic
If goes without saying that you’ll need to remove your mask once you’re in the dental chair, but please do wear one when you walk into the clinic. We care greatly about the health of our staff and patients and would like to avoid any possible risks.
What we’ve done to reduce risk
Although impeccable hygiene and disinfection has been a standard for us far before the pandemic, we have “upped our game” by a million. Only the necessary dental instruments are present at the surgery when a patient is in, and everything is thoroughly disinfected after each patient.
We have removed all objects which cannot be disinfected from the surgeries and all areas around the clinic and we strive to minimise the waiting time spent in reception area for each patient.
Furthermore, our surgeries are now equipped with Airvia Pro 150 air filters – some of the most advanced air purification technology, ionising the air, and utilising UV technology, as well as photocatalysis. The filters help us ensure that the air in the clinic is virus and pollution free at all times and provides a safe environment for both our patients, and our staff.