In the initial stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, health professionals – including dentists – limited services to only the most urgent needs. Dentists postponed preventive visits and routine cleanings and took care of only the most necessary issues.
The Just For Your Smile offices in Potomac, Maryland, and Vienna, Virginia, joined the quarantine, taking care of only the most urgent dental issues. Reduced appointments helped to make sure that personal protective equipment was available to protect patients and professionals during those urgent treatments.
You can’t delay your dental care forever, however, and now routine care is resuming. As we welcome patients back, we want you to understand what it’s like to go to the dentist during the pandemic.
What is known about the transmission of COVID-19
COVID-19 is caused by a specific virus named SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 is a new disease, but the virus does behave in some ways that are similar to other, better-understood viruses.
Scientists believe that it is spread when an infected person sneezes, coughs, or talks and their respiratory droplets come into contact with another person’s eyes, nose, or mouth.
The virus has the potential to survive in the air and on some surfaces for a long time; in some cases, even for days. Some infected people don’t have symptoms at all but may still spread the virus.
Due to this transmissibility, dental care requires some special infection-control measures.
Proper preventive measures have so far prevented any major outbreaks of COVID-19 in dental facilities.
Dental care precautions
You may be concerned about dental care in the age of COVID-19. Dental care does require technicians, hygienists, and doctors to work close to your mouth, so respiratory droplets are nearly impossible to avoid. Many of the tools we use, like air-water syringes, ultrasonic scalers, and surgical instruments, create a visible spray that may contain saliva, blood, microorganisms, and infectious agents like SARS-CoV-2.
Rest assured that any time you come to Just For Your Smile, our team is taking standard precautions, which include:
Proper hand and respiratory hygiene
- Sanitizing instruments and devices
- Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces
We also use PPE, including gloves, masks, and eyewear. We monitor incoming patients for infection, limit wait time and numbers of patients in waiting areas, and employ extra disinfecting and air-purifying measures to keep you healthy.
When to make an appointment
You can come in for routine cleanings and preventive care. Our offices are also open for emergencies.
Be sure to make an appointment if you have:
- Sustained trauma to your mouth
- Significant pain in a tooth or your jaw
- Swollen or painful gums
- A cracked, broken, or knocked-out tooth
- Bleeding that won’t stop
- Abnormal-looking tissue in your mouth
When you come to either of our offices, you can be sure that we follow the latest research and recommendations regarding workplace practices, sterilization, and disinfecting.
To get back on track with dental visits or have an emergency addressed, call Just For Your Smile at the most convenient location or book your appointment online today.