4 Reasons Your Dentist is Safe During COVID
The coronavirus pandemic has fundamentally changed life as we know it, even inside the dentist office. It has left you wondering whether your dentist is safe during COVID. Indeed, the coronavirus poses unique threats to our health and safety. This makes it more important than ever before for dental offices to implement strategic precautions and infection control techniques with a proven track record of patient safety.
Luckily, dentists have been mastering the art of infection control for decades. As California Dental Association President Richard Nagy explained during the pandemic’s peak, “Dentists are really great at infection control and being prepared to create safety. That’s what we’re good at, and that’s what we’re doing.”
Every step we take during a dental procedure serves a specific purpose to prevent the spread of infection. Now, in the face of the coronavirus, Dr. Steven Pakiz and his team in Long Beach, California are working diligently to implement comprehensive COVID-19 policies.
The safety of our patients is our top priority, so we’ve adopted the guidance of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and American Dental Association (ADA) regarding COVID-19.
If you feel uncertain about your safety at the dentist, these four reasons show exactly how safe you really are.
Social Distancing Measures
Dr. Pakiz is committed to using strategic social distancing measures to keep patients a safe distance away from each other. We invite patients to wait outside or in their cars until their appointments begin. We have also adjusted our waiting area to accommodate a social distancing environment:
- Chairs set six feet apart
- No magazines and other frequently touched objects
- Maximum number of people permitted inside at the same time
- Staggered appointment times to minimize indoor traffic
We are so thankful for our wonderful, compassionate patients who have gone out of their way to help our office implement these social distancing precautions successfully!
Symptom Screening to Keep Your Dentist Safe During COVID
To align with CDC recommendations, our office now screens all patients for fever and potential symptoms of COVID-19. We may take your temperature, document symptoms or absence of symptoms consistent with the coronavirus, and ask if you’ve been advised to self-quarantine due to exposure to someone with SARS-CoV-2 infection.
This screening process is quick and simple, but it goes a long way in making sure patients and healthcare workers are not exposed to COVID-19 or put at risk of its transmission.
Increased Safety Standards
Personal protective equipment (PPE) plays a vital role in ongoing infection control. This is exactly why our dental professionals diligently use all required and recommended forms of PPE to keep themselves and patients as safe as possible.
The forms of PPE we use in our office include:
- Goggles or face shields
- Face mask
- N9 respirators
Our staff members also maintain strict adherence to hand hygiene before and after all patient contact. Thorough hand washing removes pathogens that might have been transferred to bare hands and prevents those pathogens from traveling any further.
Superior Cleaning Measures to Keep Your Dentist Safe During COVID
Dr. Pakiz and his staff have also intensified their cleaning measures to be even more thorough and precise than before the pandemic. These measures are used to “ensure that environmental cleaning and disinfection procedures are following consistently and correctly after each patient.”
Our regular cleaning and sanitation procedures include:
- Sterilization of patient-care items
- High-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters
- Use of hospital-grade disinfectant
- Easy access to hand sanitizer
Dr. Pakiz and his team are taking every measure to ensure that your dentist is safe during COVID. Patients who feel sick, present with a fever, or suspect they may be experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should not come in for an appointment. When you do come in for an appointment, be sure to wear a mask or other face covering at all times until your dentist is ready to examine your mouth.
Other appointments, especially those involving dental drills and other tools that could create aerosols that potentially spread the coronavirus, may be postponed until further notice. Our goal is to limit the risk of aerosolizing the virus. As the guidelines provided by the CDC and ADA evolve, our office will also adjust our methods.
Make an Appointment Today
Though it’s hard to predict when this pandemic will come to an end, Dr. Pakiz promises one thing: patient safety is always his top priority. Don’t let this pandemic threaten your oral health as well. It’s done enough damage already!
You can schedule a dentist appointment with the comfort and knowledge that your dentist is taking every possible precaution to guarantee a safe and risk-free dental experience.
We are here to answer all of your questions and help you schedule your next appointment! Just call our Long Beach, CA office or request an appointment online.