COVID-19 has altered the way that we approach activities and go about our day to day lives, including what services we can and cannot access. One of these services is seeing a dental professional. While most dental offices are continuing to offer care to those who need it most in emergencies, routine examinations such as dental cleanings have been brought to a halt. Why is this, and why are these restrictions in place?
COVID-19 is known to be spread through droplets, such as saliva, and not necessarily when someone sneezes either. Working in the mouth puts dentists in close contact with saliva and actively puts them at risk for contracting or picking up the virus and spreading it to another patient. Saliva droplets frequently spray when dentists do activities such as drilling, polishing, scaling, and rinsing, things that are involved with nearly every procedure. Therefore, until safety measures can be put in place, non-emergency trips to the dentist are postponed.
Non-emergency conditions and treatments that fall under this category include, but are not limited to:
- Halitosis (bad breath)
- Denture concerns
- Clicking jaws
- Fillings (in most cases)
- Mildly loose teeth (that aren’t at risk for coming out)
For what is considered an emergency, please reference our previous blog, and/or contact your local dentist to see what services they currently offer during this time.
For the foreseeable future, it looks as though COVID-19 will be a present part of our lives. In the meantime, while you wait for your dentist to give the “go-ahead”, please continue to maintain a healthy diet and stick to a rigorous oral hygiene routine.