Dental Emergency and Coronavirus

The U.S. has become the new global epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. As of April 22, 2020, the United States has already broken the 800,000’s mark of COVID-19 cases. Regulations have been imposed for weeks now, however; they have been changing continuously as the virus has continued to spread across the country. Generally, restrictions have become stricter as new cases and deaths are being confirmed daily.

The whole country has been locked down in an attempt to slow the propagation of the virus. The State of Arizona has not been exempted since it has also been hit by the virus and many non-essential tasks, services, and errands will be postponed until further notice. These include non-urgent dental appointments, such as routine checkups and cleanings. Now here is some pertinent information to answer this important question:

Is it safe to visit the dentist?

That is the question that a lot of people with pending dental work and procedures are asking. The federal and state governments have mandated that dental offices can only see patients that have a dental emergency. This means that braces, cleanings, aesthetical implants, and most other cases are not to be seen until further notice.

Even though dental tools and machines are disinfected and sterilized, there is a problem with the COVID-19 virus. The coronavirus goes into the air after a dental procedure that uses a drill or a scaler, which leaves live viruses in the air for up to 3 hours. This can be dangerous for both the dental health practitioner and the patient. That is why the federal and state governments have restricted dental appointments to solely dental emergencies. This is a way to slow down the mass infections that have been taking place in the last weeks.

What is considered a dental emergency?

According to the American Dental Association, amidst the coronavirus pandemic, the following guideline specifies what can be considered a dental emergency case, which will require immediate attention:

  • Bleeding that does not stop
  • Painful swelling in or around your mouth
  • Pain in a tooth, teeth or jawbone
  • Gum infection with pain or swelling
  • After surgery treatment (dressing change, stitch removal)
  • Broken or knocked-out tooth
  • Denture adjustment for people receiving radiation or other treatment for cancer
  • Snipping or adjusting wire of braces that hurts your cheek or gums
  • Biopsy of abnormal tissue

The full list of what is and what is not considered an emergency can be found in the following image.

Guidelines according to the American Dental Association

At Somos Dental we want to do everything possible to slow down the Coronavirus pandemic that has been affecting the world, that is why you should call or message us to find out if your case is considered an emergency. At Somos Dental we have a team of great professionals! If you need to contact us for a dental emergency, you can do so through messenger on Facebook, by phone or by email. We have 5 locations throughout the Phoenix Metro Area and they are open for only limited days and hours: Downtown, Desert Sky, Mesa and Camelback. Give us a call at 623-232-0089 if you have any questions.

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