Dentists across the country are reopening, but due to the ongoing threat of COVID-19, many patients are still worried about their safety. Dental practices are some of the cleanest healthcare facilities in the country right now because of the strict COVID-19 safety precautions that they’re taking. If you go in for a checkup and cleaning, you can rest assured that your health and safety are your dental team’s top priority. Read on to learn about five strict sanitation guidelines your practice is following to keep you safe.
Frequent Hand Hygiene
Hand hygiene is one of the most important precautionary measures against COVID-19. That’s why your dental team will be washing their hands with soap and water before and after they put on gloves. This way, in case a glove has a defect or hole in it, their hands will be clean at all times. There will also be hand sanitizer located around the office and in common areas for patients’ use.
Using Personal Protective Equipment
Personal protective equipment, including masks, face shields, eye protection, and gloves will be worn at all time to protect both patients and staff from the accidental spread of saliva and bodily droplets. Along with this, all PPE will be removed and replaced when leaving treatment rooms and the dental staff will avoid touching their face and any other surfaces in the treatment room.
Before a patient arrives for their appointment, dental staff will conduct an over-the-phone screening by asking them if they have experienced any common symptoms of COVID-19. Once you actually get to the office for your appointment, they will take your temperature and make sure that you still aren’t exhibiting any common signs of illness. This helps keep the staff and other patients as safe as possible.
Disinfection & Sterilization of the Facilities
Dental staff are also frequently sterilizing treatment areas and waiting rooms throughout the day, including after each appointment. All patient-care items such as dental mirrors, scalers, polishers, and other instruments are being regularly sterilized using heat to kill any bacteria or germs. Other items that have the ability to come into contact with mucous membranes or saliva will also be sterilized using high-level disinfection.
In-Practice Social Distancing Where Possible
Because social distancing has been shown to be an incredibly effective precautionary measure against COVID-19, your dental office will also be enforcing this by removing furniture from the waiting room and even offering virtual check-ins from patients’ vehicles. This way, they can monitor and reduce the traffic flow, making it easier to disinfect common spaces between appointments and make sure that patients have enough room to stay at least six feet apart.
You have every right to be concerned about your dentist’s safety practices during COVID-19. Know that they are doing everything in their power to create a safe environment for you so you can continue getting the high-quality dental care that you deserve.
About the Author
Dr. Randall Nameth has been practicing dentistry since 1984. He is passionate about providing his patients with high-quality dental care that allows them to preserve their natural smiles for their entire life. He regularly takes continuing education courses to stay up-to-date with the latest advancements in his field. For questions about our COVID-19 safety precautions or to schedule an appointment, visit Randall Nameth DDS’ website or call 614-846-2222.