Patient Safety After COVID-19
When the time comes and your orthodontist’s office reopens, you may be wondering what precautions your orthodontist is taking to ensure your safety. While the appointment process may look a little different, don’t worry, your orthodontist has always been on the front lines of preventing the spread of diseases. From treatment and waiting room disinfection to the strict use of personal protective equipment (PPE), the safety of patients and staff members continues to be of utmost importance.
During the COVID-19 crisis and beyond, the safety of patients and staff continues to be a top priority:
Before, during and after treatment:
When it comes to preventing the spread of disease, rest assured that your orthodontist has always been strict on universal precautions. Precautions have always included the use of masks, glasses, gloves, sterile instruments and devices as well as clean and disinfected environmental surfaces.
Additionally, frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, chairs, desks and bathrooms are cleaned and disinfected often. Other objects that may be difficult to disinfect, such as magazines, reading material and refreshment stations, may even be removed all together. Your orthodontist might also ask you to brush your teeth at home before coming to the office.
The process may look a little different:
While your check-in may involve a few extra steps this will help ensure the safety of patients and staff. For instance, the process may include screening and triage questions, waiting in your vehicle versus the waiting room, checking your temperature or asking that you follow social distancing and infection control etiquette. Some orthodontists may recommend against bringing companions to appointments, unless necessary. If companions do accompany patients, they may also be screened during patient check-in.
During your appointment, you may be asked to use a hydrogen peroxide rinse, which just helps bring down the amount of germs and viruses in the mouth to a lower level. There may be fewer patients in the office at one time to promote social distancing. If you have any questions or concerns, your orthodontic team is available to provide answers.
Rest assured your AAO orthodontist will be following any recommended precautions to treat all orthodontic patients safely.
Elizabeth Lyons DDS MSD
North Seattle Orthodontics