The COVID-19 pandemic has restructured the way that many people are living their lives. Social distancing and quarantining have become routine to a large percentage of the population. As dental practices begin to open back up, they too have to take action to maintain completely safe conditions for their patients. Fortunately, dentists and their teams are going the extra mile and putting protocols in place to create completely sterile appointments from beginning to end. The next time you see your Shepherdsville dentist during COVID-19, you can expect to see quite a few changes.
Changing How You Wait
The waiting area is usually where you’re exposed to the greatest number of other patients during a standard dental visit. During the pandemic, some practices are allowing you to bypass the waiting room all together by giving you the option of checking-in and waiting for your appointment in the safety of your vehicle. If you’d prefer the waiting area over your car, you’ll notice that the number of available chairs has decreased and that they’ve been spaced six feet apart to allow you to social distance in place.
Before your appointment, you will receive a no-touch temperature check as well as a questionnaire to assess how likely it is that you’ve been exposed to the virus. Each member of the dental team takes this same test daily. It is important to make sure that both patients and the clinical team are not at risk of spreading the virus to each other.
Extra Protective Equipment
PPE (personal protective equipment) is always a part of your dental visit. Your dentist, hygienist, and assistant have always used disposable gloves and masks during your appointments. Now, they are using even more protective equipment such as face shields, surgical gowns, and goggles to further limit the spread of potentially harmful particles. Even the front desk team members wear masks to protect patients as they come in.
After every appointment, the operatory that was used is thoroughly sterilized. Every exposed surface, from light switches and doorknobs and countertops and the dental chair, are completely disinfected. All dental instruments go through rigorous sterilization procedures and are not used again until the process is complete. Each night, the entire practice goes through a deep cleaning to make sure that it is completely sterile for the next day.
About the Author
Dr. Patrick Carroll found his true calling in dentistry. He is dedicated to providing exceptional patient care and changing lives through his craft. He received his Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from the University of Louisville and has continued his education at some of the most prestigious institutions in the dental field, such as the Las Vegas Institute. He taught in the General Practice Residency post-doctoral program at the University of Louisville Dental School and co-founded the University of Louisville Advanced General Dentistry Program. If you are interested in learning more about how he and his team at Exceptional Dentistry are keeping patients safe, give the office a call at (502) 264-8320 or reach out to them through their website.