How Risky is an Emergency Dental Treatment During COVID?
One of the protective measures to contain COVID-19 is by keeping social distance. Most places are not operational unless they are essential service providers. Dental practices are no different. Most dental practices are suspended until when deemed fit for normal operations. That is not to say you are bound to suffer when you need a dentist in an emergency.
Here is how to go about managing the emergency dental treatment during COVID.
What is Emergency dental treatment?
Determining a medical emergency is one of the hardest tasks. While there are several dental conditions, not all are emergencies. An emergency is one that comes with extra pain and discomfort—for example, a case of a highly swollen tooth.
While most dental issues are manageable in the early stages, the lack of dental care means they are likely to become severe. Already, this lack of attention has seen a rise in emergency dental cases in recent times.
Given the rising cases of emergency dental cases and the need to finish faster, the dental treatment trends are changing. Unlike before, where restorative methods were the best option, currently extraction is the most preferred option. The removal eliminates the pathogenic tooth and does not require regular doctor follow-ups.
Don’t fret; no dentist undertakes any procedure before without consulting the patient. The dentists must first explain to the patient the available treatment options then allow them to choose the most viable. The process can only commence with the consent of the patient.
Emergency Dental Treatment Guidelines
To reduce the risk of COVID transmission, the Australian Dental Association (ADA) has come up with regulations that guide dental interactions. The regulations provide for patient and dentists protection.
The ADA provides that a patient must undergo COVID screening before the commencement of the dental examination. It also directs that the patients wear protective gear. For the dental clinic, they have to ensure environmental disinfection and post-operative instructions for patients. It also provides a step to follow in case of unintentional exposure and how to keep safe after work.
The ADA also provides algorithms that reduce the risk of COVID transmission for emergency dental treatment. The algorithms are helpful in testing for the presence of the virus before treating the dental issue. The algorithm also helps the dentist in choosing the best treatment option for different dental problems.
Lastly, the ADA is always updating the resources on how to manage emergency dental treatment best. It relies on the latest information from the Center for Disease Control and the World Health Organization to come up with regulations. All the dentists that follow the guidelines ensure safe emergency dental treatment.
Medical Follow Up
Before COVID, most dentists would book follow up appointments to monitor progress. With the need to reduce patient contact, most dentists are now leveraging technology for follow up. There are several video technologies for dentist-patient communication when checking up.
Safety is the key when it comes to emergency dental treatment. Both the patient and the dentists must take protective measures during the procedure.