The closure of dental offices in California has caused huge problems for people seeking help with their dental health. Health care providers, including dentists, have major concerns in managing patients who are suspected of being infected with the coronavirus. However, dentists have been managing these concerns for a myriad of highly infectious diseases for decades and are well prepared to maintain safe clinical environments for both their patients and the dental team. We have quickly adapted to new and emerging diseases and will do so again with coronavirus.
Dentistry is a very safe environment. Disease transmission inside a dental office is extremely rare. Common places we go to like grocery stores, gas stations, and even hospitals are more likely to provide exposure to dangerous pathogens than a dental office. Dentistry standards provide great protection against anything that is transmitted by fluids.
Dentistry Has Always Done Well in the Following:
- All instruments are surgically sterile.
- Everything in the dental operatories from chairs, lights, and counter surfaces are cleaned with disinfectants that are able to kill even the toughest pathogens like HIV and Hepatitis.
- Use of barriers on equipment and team members to add extra protection.
- All sterilization equipment is regularly tested to verify its effectiveness.
These are the new safety changes during outbreaks
Extra precautions will be used during Covid 19 or other viral outbreaks.
- Installation of protective shields in the front desk area.
- Pre-appointment health screening to include temperature, and previous 2 weeks health history.
- The waiting time in our waiting room has always been kept minimum.
- There is a pretreatment rinse.
- Depending on the procedure other barriers and protection equipment is used both for the patient and the dental team.
- Placement of Dental aerosol filtration units in each room such as an isolite system to eliminate aerosol spread from dental procedures.
- Placement of air purifiers with a HEPA filter in each operatory.
- Using an extra-oral Dental Suction System to remove the high volume of droplets and aerosols produced during treatment
- Utilizing UVC light for disinfecting some of our equipment such as patients’ eyeglasses, masks, and iPads
We ask that if you have symptoms of influenza, you stay home, to protect our staff and other patients.
Dentists and the dental team will do our part to protect the public, we just ask that you wash your hands for 20 seconds, cough and sneeze into your arm or into a tissue, and stay home if you have upper respiratory symptoms.