COVID-19 has had an impact on our community and our health. To preserve personal protective equipment and to help maintain the stay at home order, some dental offices remained open for emergencies only during the pandemic. The Governor has just announced that routine dental care can now be resumed effective 5/26/20.
Dental care, including preventive cleanings and sealants, is necessary for a healthy mouth and overall health. Cavities are 4-5x more common than asthma. There are many links to systemic health problems with poor oral health, including diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
“Preventing cavities is the goal for our patients” says Dr Elisa Velazquez of Ocean Pediatric Dental Associates.
Ocean Pediatric Dental Associates (OPDA) has 3 offices in Ocean County and is gearing up to help their pediatric and orthodontic patients as they prepare to increase services.
Dental offices have always practiced strict infection control measures. OPDA is taking every precaution to protect the safety and well-being of their patients and team in the wake of the virus. There have been changes made to how dental visits will occur to increase safety for the team and for the patients. “Sterilization & cleanliness have always been a priority in our offices” says Dr Velazquez. “We will follow guidelines set forth by the New Jersey Dental Association and the CDC” as we open the offices to elective dentistry.
Patients will now be prescreened for COVID-19 prior to visits. To decrease traffic and allow for social distancing, only one adult can accompany each pediatric patient. Families will be asked to call upon arrival and they will be informed when to come into the office to decrease waiting room time. Everyone must wear a face covering upon entering the office. The temperature of each child and adult present will be taken as a precaution. Toys and magazines have been removed from the waiting rooms. All staff will have the proper protective equipment, which include face shields, lab coats and gowns.
“All dental visits are important and It’s up to every patient and their comfort level to make the decision to keep the appointment for their children” as per Dr. Velazquez. The OPDA team is ready to serve their patients and will continue to provide high quality pediatric and orthodontic care to their patients.