Currently, we still have no answers as to when the US and states will open back up again. For over a month, we’ve been home quarantined—a stay in place order that many have followed to slow the spread of COVID-19. While we have done our best, we still don’t know when everything will return to normal. Because most of us have never experienced a quarantine before, there are many questions. These can extend to dental care during the pandemic.
Our dental health is extremely important, with or without home quarantine. In this article, we’ll go over the latest COVID-19 updates, what the ADA recommends we do for things like dental emergencies, and how to maintain your oral health through this challenging time.
Though stay-at-home orders have slowed the curve of the disease, COVID-19 is still present, and more people are getting sick. Though the mortality rate doesn’t seem to be as high as once predicted, which is fantastic, there is still cause for some concern.
As of April 25, there have been over 53K deaths in the United States alone that have been linked to Coronavirus. Across the globe, there has also been a confirmed 2.86 million cases worldwide with 201k deaths overall.
When it was predicted that millions, in the US alone, would die, and looking at the statistics now, we may have turned the page and have peaked. The recommendation is for people to stay at home when possible and only venture out for essentials.
Amidst the Coronavirus pandemic, you may have noticed that your local dental offices, like Image Dental, weren’t available for routine oral health care appointments. The most significant impact made was that the ADA recommended postponing elective procedures. Elective procedures are anything that can be put off or those treatments that are considered cosmetic.
The ADA also advised dental offices to take caution when working with patients throughout the quarantine and using appropriate PPE like face masks and shields to limit exposure and transmitting potential. Though as the spread slows, and more states are fighting to reopen, more dental offices are considering opening too.
Some addition recommendation from the ADA also includes:
- Screen patients: “have you been out of the country, or have been in contact with someone with COVID-19.”
- Utilize rubber dams as much as possible.
- Avoid procedures that use aerosol.
- Check temperatures.
Taking care of your oral health during home quarantine
Have you been ignoring your oral health during quarantine? Though a person might have more time at home, it doesn’t always mean that the individual will take care of their daily needs as they once did. There is less to worry about. You aren’t going into the office. In fact, some spend most of the day in their PJs. However, neglecting your oral health can lead to problems down the road.
Not brushing and flossing as you should lead to a buildup of plaque and tartar. These are the top contributors to decay and gum disease. During quarantine, following these self-care tips, and don’t forget to schedule your routine exams and cleanings when the dental office reopens.
- Brush twice a day.
- Brush your tongue too.
- Use electric toothbrushes.
- Gargle every day with a mouth rinse.
- Drink plenty of water as it helps to eliminate harmful acids.
- Avoid sugary foods and beverages.
Taking care of your health and oral health is crucial to preventing more severe problems down the road. Caring for your teeth with routine brushing and flossing at home can minimize the chances of tooth decay that can lead to infection or permanent tooth loss. Though Image Dental is currently closed for routine visits, we are available for those needing emergency dental care and procedures, including root canals and extractions.