Why did dentists close during the coronavirus pandemic?
As part of the essential need to protect people from contracting Covid-19, the government made the decision to close down practices and open dedicated Urgent Dental Care Hubs.
Because of the very nature of dentistry, because patients and dental clinicians are in such close contact, the government considered it necessary to restrict dental treatment to urgent and emergency care only, in specially equipped centres.
What can I do if I have a dental problem?
We are receiving calls and messages from patients who are experiencing dental pain and we’re sorry not to be able to offer you face-to-face treatment ourselves.
So that we can help our patients, and other people too, we operate a remote advice and referral service so we can help patients either manage the problem at home, or access the care they need.
As our philosophy is to always help patients feel comfortable, the last thing we want is for you to be suffering without the treatment you need. Please be aware, however, that there is a high demand for service in an Urgent Care Hub, so referrals are triaged according to level of need.
- More about Urgent Dental Care Hubs
- Urgent, emergency and routine dental treatment – the differences explained
- What to expect from remote dental triage
What’s the risk of coronavirus infection during dental care?
To carry out dental treatments, scaling or fillings for example, the dentist or hygienist uses high speed tools. The procedures generate spray that could carry the coronavirus and spread to the clinician. Although dental practices meticulously contain cross-contamination, this particular virus is highly contagious. Particularly during treatments that generate an aerosol effect, there is a risk that the virus can transfer from one patient to another.
Moreover, to add to the risk, the symptoms of Covid-19 take seven days after infection to become evident. In some cases symptoms are so mild, people don’t even realise they’re ill. This means that a patient could possibly infect both the dentist and the nurse, who could then infect other patients too.
The Urgent Dental Care Hubs that are opening around the country have the essential personal protection equipment (PPE) and procedures in place. They are well equipped to treat patients in a risk-controlled environment.
At this time, until the danger of coronavirus passes, all routine dental treatments are on hold.
To access urgent and emergency care:
Either follow this link, call your SpaDental practice or 01962 798270 if you do not have symptoms and do not suspect you may carry Covid-19. The SpaDental clinical team will triage your dental concerns and inform you of your options.
Urgent and emergency referrals – important notes
1 – If your dental problem cannot be managed in any other way and surgical treatment is essential, the team will refer you to an Urgent Dental Care Hub.
2 – If you are referred, please let the clinician know which of the centres is closest to you. They will attempt to refer you to that centre.
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