HIGH POINT, N.C. — According to the American Dental Association, there are more than 200,000 dentist in the U.S. That includes more than 3,900 dentist in North Carolina. When Governor Roy Cooper issued the statewide Stay-At-Home Order in March, he labeled dental offices as essential businesses. Dentists had the option to close or continue to offer dental care for patients under tight guidelines.
Since the state is in Phase One of the reopening plan, the North Carolina Dental Society says, you should feel safe going to a regular dental appointment. But, due to the coronavirus pandemic, you can expect some changes at the dental office.
"We're trying to protect you and protect ourselves," said Dr. L'Tanya Bailey, President of The North Carolina Dental Society. "We're practicing social distancing by not allowing people to wait in the reception area. We have arrows on our floor marking ingress and egress practice so people are not coming and going or facing each other."
Some of the new safety and health measures include:
- Your car is now the waiting room. This will help limit surfaces that are touched by you and others.
- The staff will ask you some questions concerning COVID-19.
- The staff will take your temperature to make sure you have not been exposed to COVID-19 or are not currently sick to reduce risk to the office, staff, and other patients.
- Everyone will be wearing more PPE to protect themselves and you from risk of exposure.
"Oral health is directly related to your overall health, so it's just as important as ever to continue going to your regular preventive appointments," said Dr. Bailey. "As dentists, we are all navigating this new normal as a society together. But rest assured, your dentist is here for you and is working hard to make sure you have the cleanest, safest environment to get your dental care."