LATEST UPDATE ON COVID-19 AND VISITING YOUR DENTIST
COVID-19 has very quickly created a new normal, disrupting day-to-day life as we have come to know it, and impacting significantly on everyone’s life through social distancing, self-isolation and the staged closure of certain non-essential services such as pubs and gyms.
Our dental practice remain open to help you meet your urgent dental needs.
While the implications of the pandemic for the Australian community continues to change on a regular basis, your dental health continues to be important and we’d encourage you to use the information on this page to manage your dental health during this unprecedented event.
If your treatment has been delayed, we ask for your patience. We’re all in this together.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT DENTAL APPOINTMENTS
IS IT SAFE TO VISIT THE DENTIST?
Accredited dental practitioners have the highest infection control standards in the world and the safety of our patients and our staff is a cornerstone of Australian dental practice. Dentists are now at ‘Level 3’ restrictions; this means they are only treating emergency patients. This is because some non-essential dental work can create aerosols (fluid droplets) which may be concerning to the dental team. Where appropriate, dentists may also take extra precautions, and if required you will be advised of these.
CAN I SEE MY DENTIST IN AN EMERGENCY?
Yes, you can see a dentist if you have a genuine dental emergency such as knocking out a tooth, severe and constant pain, significant bleeding, or swelling of the head or neck. If you’re not sure whether you have a dental emergency it’s best to call our mandurah dentist.
Please be understanding if your situation is not deemed an emergency and your treatment is deferred, as this is a decision that has been made to ensure the safety of the broader community.
WHAT IS A DENTAL EMERGENCY?
A dental emergency is a situation that requires immediate treatment. It may involve conditions that cause severe pain, infection or directly affect your health. This can include:
- Swelling affecting your mouth, face and/or neck.
- Difficulty opening your mouth, swallowing or breathing (unrelated to COVID-19).
- Damage to your mouth or jaw following an accident or injury causing loss of a tooth or teeth being moved from their original position in the mouth.
- Severe dental pain that is affecting your sleep and/or does not subside with use of pain-relief medications.
- Tooth fracture where the nerve inside the tooth becomes exposed (which may or may not include bleeding).
- Ulcers present in the mouth for 3 weeks or longer.
- Wire or bracket fractures in orthodontic patients.
- Uncontrolled bleeding post-oral surgery.
- Patients referred by a doctor for medically necessary dental care or for urgent dental care prior to surgery that cannot be delayed.
- Treatment of a dental condition that can directly affect your health, for example, remove of an oral cancer lesion from inside the mouth.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT IF I DO SEE MY DENTIST?
During the COVID-19 pandemic, additional steps are being made to stop the spread of the virus. You might see an empty waiting room and be asked to wash your hands or use hand sanitiser as you enter the practice. Your dentist will ask you to do a mouthwash prior to treatment and will likely use a ‘rubber dam’ to perform any emergency treatment. All of these measures are designed to minimise any risk to you and to the practice team.
CAN I BE TREATED FOR A DENTAL EMERGENCY IF I HAVE COVID-19?
If you need urgent dental care and think you may have COVID-19, it’s important to call our dentist and discuss your situation.
If you have a dental emergency and have been diagnosed with COVID-19, dental treatment is available as an in-patient or within a hospital setting by appropriately trained and credentialled dental personnel.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I’M HALF WAY THROUGH MY TREATMENT?
If your treatment has already begun and you are schedueld to have it finshed, you should contact your dentist to discuss whether it’s safe to defer the treatment. If your treatment cannot be deferred, your dentist will complete the work taking extra precautions or refer you to someone who is able to complete it.
WHEN WILL DENTAL PRACTICES OPEN AGAIN?
It’s impossible to say when things will return to normal and you will be able to visit your dentist for your usual check-up. Once your usual dental practice opens and is able to treat you, they should be in contact to schedule an appointment.