Dental Treatment During COVID Lockdown : Have you been wondering how to maintain your dental health during COVID-19 lockdowns?
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to have widespread impacts throughout all areas of life. This includes dentistry and dental services throughout Australia.
Healthcare and dentistry are considered to be essential services and, as such, dental clinics do continue to operate at this time. There are, however, some impacts on normal dental service delivery in certain areas and certainly during lockdowns.
The Importance of Dental Care
Your oral health is intrinsic to your overall health and wellbeing. Not only do you need to maintain healthy, clean teeth to avoid issues such as tooth decay, tooth death, and tooth loss, but also to keep your gums healthy. Your dentist also checks for early signs of disease, including oral cancer, when you have a routine preventative dental appointment.
Oral health is also closely linked to cardiovascular and respiratory health. Bacteria from unhealthy gums, for example, can enter the bloodstream via the mouth and cause heart disease and other conditions. Your mouth really is the gateway to the health of the rest of your body.
Cleaning your teeth properly at home twice every day is just one aspect of maintaining your oral health. You must also visit your dentist twice per year for a check-up and clean, and address issues promptly as they arise.
But what is the impact of COVID-19 lockdowns on dental care?
Are Dentists Open?
Throughout Australia, dental practices remain open and operating as usual during COVID-19 in areas with low infection numbers and without stay-at-home restrictions. People in these regions can continue to visit their dentist for everything from emergency care to routine cleaning and check-ups. This is also done in compliance with regulations including QR code check-in, mask-wearing, and enhanced infection control practices. You should not, however, attend a dental appointment if you have symptoms including feeling unwell, runny nose, coughing, sneezing, sore throat, or other flu-like symptoms.
For those people in regions with lockdowns in place, dentists remain open for essential urgent dental care and emergencies.
DO NOT PUT OFF URGENT DENTAL CARE.
While the specifics of this are fluid, urgent dental care generally refers to:
- A broken or fractured tooth
- Loose permanent tooth
- Lost filling
- Tooth or gum abscess
- Facial swelling
- Oral infection or injury
- Oral swelling, bleeding, or severe ulcer
- Injury to soft tissues that won’t stop bleeding (e.g. tongue, cheek, lip, gum)
- Knocked out or lost tooth
- Jaw injury
- Broken orthodontic braces
- A new or growing lump or persistent sore in the mouth
You must wear a face mask to the clinic.
Routine, non-urgent appointments for basic check-ups and teeth cleaning, as well as non-essential or non-urgent cosmetic dentistry procedures, are currently suspended in many areas until restrictions ease.
Not all dental clinics are open during a lockdown. The Australian Dental Association has information on its website about where you can go for urgent dental care locally to you.
You should also know that your local dentist always stocks and uses premium dental supplies – including the basic dental care items you use at home every day. If you are affected by lockdowns, make sure you use high-quality toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwashes, and dental floss to maximise the health of your teeth and mouth while you wait for your dentist to return to business as usual.
Related Videos about Dental Treatment During COVID Lockdown :
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COVID-19 & Dentistry: Practice and Patient Safety During a Pandemic
Is it safe to go to the dentist amid COVID-19?
Emergency dental care during Covid 19 lock down
Defining Dental Emergencies That Require Treatment During the COVID-19 Outbreak
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