At The Plano Dentist, it has always been our goal to protect the health and safety of our patients and team.
As the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation evolves, we remain committed to this goal. We continually check for updates from the most credible sources such as the Center for Disease Control, American Dental Association, and the American Academy of Physiological Medicine and Dentistry to name a few. We promise to share with you what we believe warrants caution and what is not worthy of unwarranted fear.
Coronavirus Concerns & Precautions
The novel coronavirus is known to cause a respiratory illness (COVID-19), with symptoms of fever, coughing and difficulty breathing. There is currently no vaccination to protect against COVID-19, nor are there drugs to specifically treat the virus.
According to the latest information, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) believes at this time that symptoms may appear two days to fourteen days (median time is five days) after exposure.
The emergence of a new infectious disease re-emphasizes the importance of vigilance relative to all aspects of infection control for patients and for Dental Healthcare Personnel (DHCP).
At The Plano Dentist, as appointments are now being made and/or confirmed, we will be gathering information about the well-being and recent travel history of every patient.
If it is determined that a patient may have an acute illness or was exposed to one, elective treatment at our office should and will be deferred until the patient has recovered.
As a general reminder, health care experts claim that the best prevention against respiratory illness is the following:
- Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, especially with unwashed hands.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If no tissue is available, use your elbow or sleeve.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home if you are sick.
The Plano Dentist Uses Universal Precautions and Transmission-Based Precautions
Universal Precautions are the minimum infection prevention practices that apply to all patient care, regardless of the suspected or confirmed infection status of the patient, in any setting where health care is delivered.
Transmission-Based Precautions include Contact Precautions, Droplet Precautions and Airborne Precautions, and are based on the likely routes of transmission of specific infectious agents.
Our office protocols are designed to protect both Dental Healthcare Personnel (DHCP) and you, our patients. These precautions include:
- Hand hygiene
- Use of personal protective equipment (e.g., gloves, masks, eyewear)
- Respiratory hygiene / cough etiquette
- Sharps Safety (engineering and work practice controls)
- Safe injection practices (i.e., aseptic technique for parenteral medications)
- Sterilization of instruments and devices. All instruments are sterilized or used once and disposed of.
- All surfaces of our dental treatment rooms are cleaned and disinfected after every patient. The materials and methods used have been shown to be effective for viruses.
As with flu outbreaks that came before it, we believe the current coronavirus situation will pass. At present, however, keeping aware of the latest information can lead to the proper balance of caution with reduced fear.
We remain committed to keeping you informed, as well as protecting your health and safety. If you would like to find out more on your own, we highly recommend the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center at https://coronavirus.jhu.edu
Please feel free to share any questions or concerns you may have with us.
The Plano Dentist