The Dental Office and Coronavirus - What You Need to Know

In the past three months, I have been impressed and moved by the resiliency, patience, and strength in our community as we were all forced to adapt to changes as well as use our best knowledge and practical measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

As a dental provider, I am thankful to have been able to reopen my practice on June 1. Now as we resume dental care to help prevent and treat dental diseases, we as a dental office have taken extra preventative measures to keep our patients and Team safe. Changes have been made to affect our physical office and protocols, but the heart of the dental practice remains the same - to provide quality dental care in a comfortable environment where patients are family.

Here are changes you can expect when coming into my office:

Before You Arrive

  • Patients are asked to complete a COVID-19 questionnaire electronically. A link to this will be provided in an appointment confirmation email. Alternatively, if necessary or requested, we can text the link to the questionnaire to your phone.
  • Know yourself - please do not come in if you are not feeling well.
  • Plan ahead for your dental visit. It will be more difficult to get appointments due to limited availability, so if you make an appointment, make sure it is during a day and time that will work for you.
  • Wear a face mask, please.

When You Arrive

  • Use hand sanitizer before you enter our office. A hand sanitizer station will be set up outside our doors.
  • Keep your face mask on while moving throughout the office - from reception room, into your treatment room, and as you are leaving. Masks are removed only while I or one of my hygienists is taking care of your teeth and gums.
  • Our reception area will look more minimalistic - we now have fewer chairs and no magazines. The area has been reorganized for social distancing.
  • Forehead temperatures taken with a touchless, infrared thermometer before the start of your appointment.
  • You will be given hydrogen peroxide rinse to swish with for approximately one minute before the start of your scheduled exam or procedure.

During your appointment

There is some exciting new equipment to look out for.

  • Air Doctor 4-in-1 UltraHEPA Air Purifier. This powerful air purifier removes 99.95% of particles as small as 0.003 microns and changes the air 3x/hour. Our goal is to ensure our work areas are well ventilated!
  • Extraoral suction. I’ve been told that this machine looks like an “elephant’s trunk” due to its large flexible hose. For certain procedures, we will use this to contain and immediately remove any aerosols which result.
  • Dryshield. We will use this intraoral suction and soft tissue retractor in some cases to minimize aerosols. It also is a comfortable tooth pillow for you to bite on as we are taking care of your dental needs.
  • Hypochlorous acid.
  • We may look different - Our dental Team will be wearing n95s, surgical mask, face shield, disposable gowns, and will be keeping our Personal Protective Equipment on while in the office.

We are 100% Paperless

  • Not only will we commit to reducing waste and saving trees, but having 100% Paperless forms will allow us to receive vital information from you without the need to exchange physical items such as paper, pens, etc.
  • We will be sending Patient Intake forms via email and can also send consent forms directly to your phone, or email if required, while you are in the office.

When you leave

  • As always, we will help you make your next appointment and collect any payments due.

In Summary

It is very important to us to keep you and our Team healthy. In coming in to see us, we hope you are reassured that you will be well taken care of. In addition to our customary Universal Precautions, we have taken additional steps to keep you safe as outlined above.

Should you have any questions regarding changes to our routine during your dental appointment, we welcome you to contact us via phone or email. As we all adapt to our “New Normal,” we continue to be here for you, and look forward to seeing you soon!