Stay home, stay safe, and keep a healthy smile. Most dental practices across the USA have stopped performing routine dental care because of the current coronavirus outbreak.
Detecting and correcting dental emergencies on time can help you prevent infections and other complications that could become major issues.
Have you washed your hands yet? You might not be sick, but you’re definitely experiencing the devastating side effects of Coronavirus; from improvised home offices and toilet paper madness, to quarantine, social distancing and financial crisis. We are all going through these and more problems and we need to stay together.
We all know the cure; just stay home! This might be an easy enough solution to prevent the spread of the virus since it involves doing nothing (literally). And though there are some cases in which you must go outside; my advice, as a health professional is to avoid going out unless it is absolutely necessary.
But how do you stay home when you have major issues in your mouth that need to be treated ASAP? Well that’s a tricky one, which is why I bring you my recommendations on how to go through the Coronavirus outbreak while keeping good oral health.
First things first. You should STAY home unless it is strictly necessary to go out. So before you go out ask yourself, “Do you really need to do whatever it is that you’re gonna do?” You’ll see the answer is almost always NO!
One of the valid reasons to go out is your health. Most dental issues are not life or death, but if you don’t see a dentist when you do need emergency care, you can actually cause yourself more harm than good.
But keep in mind that most dental practices across the USA have stopped performing routine dental care because of the current coronavirus outbreak. Which means they’ll only see you if they consider it an emergency.
Here’s a list of some of the issues that might be considered emergencies:
I live in Florida. Days here are sunny as they can get; yet while I see my patients, my children and husband are staying home. They would love to go out and have fun, but they’re not on vacation, they’re in voluntary isolation. We understand how important it is to follow the procedures recommended by the CDC. Incredibly, if you drive by the beach you will find a lot of people hanging around.
Up until the moment when I wrote this post, the USA was already the country with the most confirmed cases of Coronavirus in the world with more than 150,000 infected and over 2,800 deaths. We’re going through one of the worst crisis of our history and we must take it seriously.
So let’s review some of the good practices you must follow in case you need to visit your dentist:
In case you were in a comma, living on another planet, or on a spiritual retreat during the last month, the CDC has an extensive article that explains steps to protect yourself from Coronavirus and the way the virus spreads. In general they recommend following these 5 steps:
Wash your hands frequently with soap during 20 seconds
If you want to read the entire document click the following link (once you finish this document of course). How to Protect Yourself
If your dentist recommends that you need to go see them, then make sure you take some precautions:
Dentists all over the country are taking extra precautions to deal with the Coronavirus Outbreak. Please stick to their instructions since those procedures are in place for everyone’s safety.
This is probably the most critical part of visiting your Dentist. You’ll probably have to stop by a pharmacy or grocery store to buy supplies. That’s ok, but keep being cautious while you do it. Follow these steps to avoid Coronavirus breaking into your house:
As dentists we have a responsibility to take care of our patients. Dentists are legally and ethically obligated to see their emergency patients. Most will have special procedures to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus. Talk to them before you jump in the car; they’ll make sure that your dental needs qualify as an emergency.
Keeping up with your health is a major challenge during these tough times. People are struggling not only with dental but all kinds of health procedures due to the coronavirus. Hospitals and doctor’s offices are exposed to the virus but we are taking all precautions necessary; medical staff are saturated but we keep our efforts up to help us get through this crisis.
If you have a dental emergency and feel that it needs to be treated, make sure to follow all of my recommendations and rely on your dentist’s advice to make the best decision for your health and everyone else’s. We’re all in this together, and it’s up to all of us to act responsibly.
Stay safe, stay home, and keep a healthy smile!
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