Thursday, August 13, 2020

Delaying Dental Appointments Again?

 Recently the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended delaying any non-essential dental appointments again due to Covid-19. This means that any routine check-ups, dental cleanings, and preventative care should not be provided until the WHO has seen a significant drop in COVID cases. Who knows when that could be since we are already going on 6 months. 

The American Dental Association (ADA) has released a statement which states " respectfully yet strongly disagrees" with the World Health Organization's interim guidance recommending that "routine" dental care be delayed in certain situations because of COVID-19.

"Oral health is integral to overall health. Dentistry is an essential health care." ADA President Chad P. Gehani said. "Dentistry is essential health care because if it's role in evaluating, diagnosing, or treating oral disease, which can affect systemic health."

The ADA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have set their own guidelines on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19 within dental practices. These include:

  • Screening patients for travel and signs and symptoms of infection when they update their medical histories.

  • Taking temperature readings as part of their routine assessment of patients before performing dental procedures.

  • Making sure the personal protective equipment they use is appropriate for the procedures being performed.

  • Using a rubber dam when appropriate to decrease possible exposure to infectious agents.

  • Using high-speed evacuation for dental procedures producing an aerosol.

  • Autoclaving handpieces after each patient.

  • Having patients rinse with a 1% hydrogen peroxide solution before each appointment.

  • Cleaning and disinfecting public areas frequently, including door handles, chairs, and bathrooms.

What are your thoughts on delaying non-essential dental appointments again?

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