The Covid-19 pandemic taught the Enterprise Dental Care team three important lessons. We found these lessons are universal to all dental offices not just specific to our Bowie-Mitchellville dental office.
Dentists had significantly lower COVID-19 infection rates than other healthcare workers across the United States. According to a study from the American Dental Association Science & Research Institute and Health Policy Institute.dentists' COVID-19 incidence rates ranged from 0.2% to 1.1% each month, and the average incidence rate over the six months was 0.5%, The result, only 2.6% of dentists across the country contracted COVID-19. Dental Hygienists had a higher but still amazing low rate of 3.1% given their exposure risk.
We‘re proud to say the Enterprise Dental Care office had zero COVID-19 cases during the pandemic! And, we believe none of our patients contracted COVID-19 from our office but it’s hard to pinpoint how one contracts a virus in a pandemic.
Our office still goes above and beyond the strict infection control protocols mandated by law. We go one step further by wearing better masks and gowns, using HEPA filters, disinfecting commonly touched surfaces and disinfecting rooms and air several times a day.
Early last year dental offices were closed across the country. Our office, which serves the Bowie MD and Mithchellville MD community was closed from March to June except for emergencies. Nearly four months of preventative dental checkups and cleanings were lost. When we re-opened many patients cancelled their dental cleaning appointments. An opportunity was lost to find small issues before they became big problems.
We saw an increase in emergency visits because some patients suffered through what they hoped was temporary pain. At Enterprise Dental Care we value preventative dental care because we increase our chances of a successful dental solution when issues are found early. We’re happy to be back to normal because bi-annual dental checkups do make a difference in our patients dental health.
This was not an easy year for patients who were at high-risk from COVID-19. Underlying medical conditions made it difficult. But these patients had the most to gain from a dental visit. High-risk patients with a heart condition or diabetes are encouraged to visit their dentist every three months because these underlying conditions correlate with one’s oral health. Preventative dental care appointments are an effective way to assess your underlying condition.
The past year taught our team a lot about how important infection prevention and control strategies are during a pandemic. We did all the prudent things from screening patients and staff to disinfecting between patient appointments and social distancing among patients.
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