June 14, 2020
When it comes to protecting people from COVID-19, we know that social distancing works. But while practicing it at work or the store is pretty clear cut, you may be wondering how it works in a dental office. Fortunately, social distancing can still be used very effectively at the dentist! Along with other protocols in place at this time, it allows you and your family to safely get dental care with as minimal risk as possible. Learn more below about how social distancing will be used at your next dental appointment.
How Is Social Distancing Used at the Dentist?
Social distancing involves avoiding groups and putting at least 6 feet between yourself and other people. While you’ll obviously need to be close to a dentist and their staff during your procedure itself, social distancing can still be used to minimize your contact with others from the moment you arrive until the moment you leave.
Here’s what you can expect at your dental appointments:
- Staggered scheduling – The days of crowded or busy dental offices are a thing of the past for the foreseeable future. Now, scheduling is being done so that fewer patients are being seen at one time.
- Virtual waiting rooms – Instead of waiting in a physical waiting room with other patients, many dentists are asking people to wait in their car. When you arrive, you’ll either call or text the office to let them know you’re there. When they’re ready for you, they’ll simply send a text or call you.
- Fewer patients at once – Aside from the exception of guardians for children or dependents, dentists are asking that their patients come in alone for their appointments to reduce the overall number of people in the office at one time.
Additional Safety Protocols During the Pandemic
Social distancing isn’t the only safety protocol being used right now to keep you safe. Now, dentists are using even more stringent sanitation practices than usual and asking patients to wear a mask (when they’re not in the dental chair) and wash their hands when they come in.
You’ll also likely have your temperature taken and be asked a series of questions about your recent physical health. Staff members are also being pre-screened at the start of each day as well.
Dental care looks a little different right now, but rest assured that with social distancing and other measures, you and your family can still maintain your oral health with as minimal risk as possible!
About the Author
Dr. Bita Kamali is a family dentist in Plano with more than 20 years of experience in the dental field. With a tremendous amount of thought into keeping her patients and staff safe during the pandemic, she’s put many additional protocols into place right now, including social distancing. If you or a loved one need dental care, or if you have any questions, you can reach Dr. Kamali via her website.