There are a few groups of people, including older individuals and those with pre-existing health conditions, that are at a high risk of suffering life-threatening symptoms if they come down with COVID-19. Do you belong to one of those groups? If so, it is important that you do all you can to keep yourself safe and healthy. But what if you need dental treatment? Is it safe to visit your dentist in Boca Raton? In this article, we discuss five concerns that you might have about your dental health during this pandemic season.
If you visit your dentist during this time of COVID-19, you can attend your appointment with confidence that your dentist has strict measures in place to keep you safe. One of those measures is social distancing. There will be fewer people in the office at any given time, and your dental team will be careful to avoid any unnecessary physical contact with you.
Sterilization and Sanitation
The American Dental Association and The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provide specific guidelines on how dental professionals can sterilize their instruments and maintain a clean office environment. Your dentist strictly adheres to these protocols each and every day because they care deeply about the safety and health of their patients.
Dental Team Member Health
Your dental team keeps a close eye on their own health. They may have to undergo a quick health screening, which includes a brief questionnaire and a contactless temperature check, each day before they begin work. If there is even the slightest discernable chance that they have contracted COVID-19, they will stay home until they can be absolutely confident that they are not contagious.
Can You Postpone Treatment?
Even with strict safety protocols in place, you may still wonder if you can postpone your dental treatment until COVID-19 is less of a threat in your local area. The answer to that question depends on what type of oral care you need. If you have a severe toothache or other serious dental problem, you should certainly visit your dentist. Delaying treatment could endanger both your long-term oral health and your overall health. On the other hand, if you are simply due for a checkup or other routine care, you may be able to safely postpone your appointment.
Caring for Oral Health at Home
Whether you decide to visit your dentist for routine care or not, you should always maintain a diligent at-home oral hygiene routine. Doing so will minimize your risk of suffering an oral health problem and reduce the odds that you will have to schedule an emergency dental appointment. Twice-daily brushing, once-daily flossing, and a balanced diet are all cornerstones of an effective at-home oral care routine.
Even if you belong to group that is at a high risk of suffering from severe COVID-19 symptoms, your oral health does not have to suffer during this pandemic season. You and your dental team can work together to make sure that your smile — and the rest of you — remains as healthy as possible!
About the Author
Dr. Steven Feit is a prosthodontist and dentist in Boca Raton with more than 30 years of experience. He has always been committed to serving patients safely, and that commitment is stronger than ever during this time of COVID-19. If you would like to learn about our practice’s safety protocols, contact us at 561-338-7535.