Most dental procedures can generate aerosols which can travel upto 1.5 metres from the source. Hence, ensure that your dental clinic has adopted stringent measures to serve you in a safe manner.

Planning to visit your dentist post lockdown? Do expect a few changes. As you may know, the risk of transmission in a dental practice is quite high. Most dental procedures can generate aerosols which can travel up to 1.5 meters from the source. Hence, most dental clinics have adopted stringent measures to serve you in a safe manner. Some of them are highlighted below:

Changes in your visit

Appointments - most clinics now offer their services only through prior appointments to maintain their disinfection and sterilization schedule. Hence, make sure you consult your dentist on the phone before paying a visit.

On arrival - You will be asked to fill a questionnaire to elicit details about your health and the health of your family members to rule out any overt COVID-19 signs and symptoms. You may also be asked about your travel history.

While waiting - The dental assistant will monitor your temperature and blood oxygen levels. Anyone with a body temperature above 37.8 C or a blood oxygen level below 90% will not be treated.

Before entering the operatory - You will be asked to wear protective shoe covers and mouth mask and sanitize your hands thoroughly before entering the operatory.

While leaving - adopt contactless payment methods to ensure your safety. You may not receive any instruction sheets or papers. They will be mailed to you.

Changes in the dental setup

Well-ventilated treatment rooms: The dentist's operatory will be sterilized and disinfected as usual. The treatment rooms will be well ventilated to prevent recirculation of air. Certain clinics also have designated treatment areas for high risk procedures

Spitting/Rinsing: You may not be allowed to spit or rinse during the procedure to prevent any contamination. The oral fluids will be evacuated with high volume suction.

Some procedures may be carried out with the aid of a rubber dam to isolate the tooth from saliva.

Type of treatments: Most dentists are only carrying out procedures that require immediate attention. They may postpone procedures which are not urgent, depending on the locality and the number of active cases.

Dental clinics have always followed strict regulations to ensure the safety of the staff and the patients. With the pandemic, the safety guidelines have been made even more tight. So do not delay the treatment of your ailing tooth, make an appointment with the dentist right away.