If you’re like many people in America, you may be wondering, “Is it safe to go to the dentist during COVID?”
Even though we’re nearly two years removed from the start of the pandemic, COVID is still affecting the lives of individuals and families. You may know that oral health is still important, but you may also be unsure what going to the dentist during COVID looks like—or if you should go at all.
Spoiler alert, yes you should still go to the dentist!
Though there are reasons to cancel a dentist appointment, there are also practices that you and your dentist should follow which can significantly reduce COVID risks.
Are you interested in learning more about seeing the dentist during COVID?
In this article, we’re helping you understand what it looks like to go to the dentist during COVID. We’ll share expert information and answer questions, like:
- Should I go to the dentist during COVID?
- Is it safe to go to the dentist during the coronavirus pandemic?
- Should I go to the dentist with a sore throat?
Let’s dive right into the top questions about going to the dentist during COVID.
Questions About Going to the Dentist During COVID
Here are three of the most common questions and their answers to help you navigate going to the dentist during COVID.
1. Is it Safe to Go to the Dentist During COVID?
Safety at the dentist during COVID comes down to two things:
- Your dentist office’s safety protocols
- Your adherence to the protocols
If your dentist and their staff are following best practices for COVID safety and you also follow the protocols they set for patients, the risks for getting COVID will be minimal.
So, what are good dentist office safety precautions?
Good Safety Protocols
Offices may differ slightly in their COVID safety precautions, but every office should have some sort of precautions in place to ensure the health and safety of its patients. If you’re considering an office that doesn’t seem to have any, it might be best to look somewhere else.
Most offices should have a list of guidelines on their website or at the office (you can call them if you don’t see them online) outlining what their staff is doing and what patients should do.
Some things that an office might expect its patients to do include:
- Brushing and flossing at home before coming to an appointment
- Wearing a mask while in the waiting room
- Having additional family members wait in the car instead of the waiting room
In addition, there should be certain things that the dental staff does to limit the spread of COVID, like:
- Decreasing patient volume to allow for less physical contact between individuals
- Lengthening appointment times to provide adequate time to disinfect equipment between patients
- Wearing additional personal protective equipment (PPE)
- Making hand sanitizing stations widely available and accessible
- Expanding disinfecting protocols to the areas outside of the actual dental rooms
Some offices may even go a step further to install air filtration systems in each room to more effectively eliminate airborne particles.
So, the answer to “Is it safe to go to the dentist during coronavirus?” is yes, as long as your office is taking safety measures and you follow the guidelines they set for patients.
2. Should I Go to the Dentist During COVID?
Oral health is something that you can’t put off for too long. Otherwise, you’ll be putting yourself at higher risk for issues like tooth decay and gum disease.
Even if you’re practicing good oral hygiene, there are procedures that you can’t do on your own. For example, your dentist will check your mouth for signs of oral cancer. They may also take x-rays to ensure that your bone and jaw health are up to par.
If your office is taking proper safety precautions against COVID, then you should highly consider going to the dentist during COVID.
3. What Are Good Reasons to Cancel a Dentist Appointment?
Many people want to know, “Should I go to the dentist with a sore throat?”
Even though you should still go to the dentist during COVID, there are times when you may want to cancel your appointment.
Since a sore throat is one of the symptoms of COVID, it could be one of many reasons to cancel a dentist appointment. Other reasons to cancel a dentist appointment could include:
- You’ve been in direct contact with someone who was recently diagnosed with COVID
- You tested positive for COVID within the past 10 days
- You recently returned from a trip outside the U.S. and haven’t received a negative test
Ultimately, your decision to cancel a dental appointment should be contingent on whether you’re at a high risk of spreading the virus to dental staff or other patients.
But if none of the above three scenarios describe you and your dentist office has good safety measures, then it’s safe for you to attend your dental appointment.
Professional, Safe Dental Care in Richmond, VA
One of the most common questions people have right now in regards to the dentist is, “Is it safe to go to the dentist during COVID?”
If your office has safety protocols for their staff and patients, then going to the dentist during COVID is safe. Each office may have slightly different precautions, but an office that has safety measures is putting the health of its staff and patient front and center.
Other common questions about the dentist and COVID are, “Should I go to the dentist during COVID?” and “Should I go to the dentist with a sore throat?”
Yes, you should go to the dentist during COVID, especially if your dentist office is following safety guidelines. It’s recommended that you see the dentist every 6-12 months for a routine checkup, and you don’t want to put a pause on these appointments for too long.
However, there are reasons to cancel a dentist appointment, like having a sore throat or being exposed to someone who was recently diagnosed with COVID. Otherwise, you can attend the dentist without any hesitation.
Looking for a safe, professional dental experience in the Richmond, VA area?
At Northside Dental Co, we take dentistry seriously. We also place a high priority on patient comfort and safety. That’s why we’ve put safety precautions in place for our staff and patients. Except for during their dental exam, all patients are required to wear a mask. We also have sanitizing stations available throughout the office and we thoroughly clean the office each day. In addition, our staff wears personal protective equipment and all our exam rooms have extra filtration systems.
Schedule your appointment online and come see how we make going to the dentist during COVID safe, comfortable, and welcoming.