Unmistakably different times
Anyone who has recently spent time in the centre of London will know that it is an unmistakably different experience than prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. Facemasks, social distancing and hand-sanitizer reign supreme, and it has never been quieter. However, as each of the residents of the capital continue to adjust to this ‘new normal’ it is important that they are aware of the dentistry options which are slowly but surely becoming ever available. By understanding what is avoidable through a dentist, patients can know what treatments they can seek out, rather than assuming that they cannot get any treatment and therefore leaving their oral health at risk of worsening.
Our teeth and overall oral health are arguably one of the most important indicators of our health and wellbeing. By understanding what treatments patients can seek out during these unprecedented times, it can help them to know when to turn to their dentist for help, rather than simply bury their heads in the sand and run the risk of letting preventable dental concerns become problematic.
What new measures are in place at the dentists?
Obviously, when re-opening any medical or dental practice, the primary concern must be on preserving the health of both the patients and the dental practitioners. It is for this reason that social distancing measures have been put into place where possible, and PPE masks are required to be worn before and after each patient’s treatment. In an attempt to curb the spread of Covid-19, certain dental practices are prioritising the patients who they are treating, based on the severity of the treatment needed.
This is established prior to visiting the practice through a series of screening questions – which are then re-asked at the practice before carrying out any treatment. Another new measure which most practices have adopted is that waiting rooms have changed to allow for two meter distancing to be observed, and that patients are advised not to turn up to the practice early as they may be required to wait outside. Hand sanitizer use is also now mandatory before and after each treatment, to help keep the staff and patients safe. Whilst it may be some time before dental practices open up their doors as normal, and whilst some treatments may be unavailable for some time, dentists and staff across the country are working as hard as they can to make sure that those who need their services the most can receive them in a safe and controlled environment.
Another service which is offered by the majority of dentists within the capital, which has become massively popular due to the impact of Covid-19, is online consultations. Many practices offered these prior to the pandemic, as a means of letting busy patients have their oral health assessed and established by a professional – without taking the time to visit their practice. Since lockdown restrictions first began to be put in place, these online, or e-consultations, have become more popular than ever. This is because they allow patients to have their teeth assessed, simply by sending away a few selfies to a dental professional. This means that they can arrange to have any treatment which they need, without leaving their homes – which can provide them with peace of mind, knowing they will get the care they need.