Woman sitting in an examination chair while consulting with her dentist

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck in early 2020, dental offices stopped offering non-urgent services because of the perceived risk of infection. Now with a better understanding of the disease and with the release of vaccines, dentists have reopened their doors and are scheduling regular visits again. 

While everything is slowly be returning to normal and as we continue learning to cope with the virus, some patients may still be concerned about returning to the dentist office. Kanehl Dental is committed to keeping you and your family safe during your regular checkups and other dental procedures. Here’s what you can expect during your visit:

Optimal Dental Office Hygiene

  • Sterilization of tools and instruments. In the early days of dentistry, hand scrubbing was the only method of cleaning dental tools and devices. But things have changed, and the sanitation of tools has improved drastically. Dental infections can initiate a vicious cycle of systemic disease. The American Dental Association and the CDC have published infection control and prevention guidelines. These recommendations, including proper instrument sterilization, guide dentists to boost safety and prevent the spread of infectious diseases. Additional measures such as using an ultrasonic bath reduce cross-contamination and minimizes the risk of disease transmission during your visit.
  • Use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). While PPE use is a standard practice in health care facilities, it's never been as essential as it has been during the pandemic. The COVID-19 virus is spread by inhaling particles or by touching mucus membranes such as your eyes, nose, or mouth after contact with the virus. As part of our strategy to keep you safe, our dentists always employ proper PPEs, utilizing masks, gloves, gowns, and the face shield for every procedure.
  • Office disinfection. Surfaces harbor germs. That's why our office is thoroughly cleaned with detergents then disinfected with surface agents to eliminate viral particles that might cause infection, especially in patient areas. 

Extra Precautions for Patient Safety During the COVID-19 Pandemic

As part of the pandemic containment measures, dental offices were restricted to only offering emergency services. Now that things have become somewhat less restricted, you can finally have the scheduled dental checkup or cleaning you need to maintain your overall dental health per the CDC's updated recommendations for healthcare settings. 

Kanehl Dental understands the risks full reopening might pose to both patients and staff. Because of this, we have adopted new safety measures to ensure patients avoid infection while receiving necessary services. For instance:

  • Social distancing and spaced appointments. We ask patients to limit the number of individuals who accompany them to their appointment, and if you are able, we encourage you to come alone. Since we accept both vaccinated and unvaccinated patients to visit our office, we place chairs 6 feet apart in the waiting area to reduce the risk of exposure to infection. Before you walk into the waiting bay, please call from the front desk from your car and allow one of our team members to come to screen you for fever or other signs of illness. This allows us to evaluate your symptoms and prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus. We also utilize a scheduling strategy for our appointments to ensure no patients overlap. This also gives us time to disinfect the office before the next patient arrives. 
  • Patient screening. We schedule all non-urgent appointments virtually. To ensure everyone who visits us receives the care they need, we also perform telephone screenings before your visit and ask if you have had any symptoms consistent with COVID-19. If we identify any signs or symptoms, we will advise you to take a COVID-19 test and reschedule your visit until you have recovered, except for emergencies. 
  • Additional measures. From continual hand sanitation to proper cough etiquette, we strive to ensure our patient's safety during their visit. We perform all procedures in individual treatment rooms, which are disinfected after every patient leaves.

Should You Visit the Dentist?

If you're having a dental issue, call your dentist immediately to schedule an appointment to prevent potential damages to your teeth. For emergencies, you will be treated regardless of your vaccination status or COVID-19 symptoms or infection. For non-urgent services, we encourage you to wait until symptoms are no longer present and you have a negative COVID-19 test.  

At Kanehl Dental, patient and staff safety are always our number one priority. We maintain strict dental hygiene protocol and utilize additional safety and sanitation measures to ensure our patients receive the care they need without risking exposure to the COVID-19 virus. To schedule your dental checkups, bi-annual cleaning, or other dental procedures, call Kanehl Dental today at (904)731-2162.