The COVID-19 pandemic has seen many challenges present themselves in varying areas of medicine. One area that has seen significant struggles is meeting the demand for endodontic care. The changing protocols required to keep individuals safe from the pandemic in medical scenarios have limited accessibility. Viral transmission risks, treatment recommendations, and patient management have all been made significantly more difficult during this time. We will explore some of these changes below and touch on how the struggle to reduce the risk of transmission has altered the way we provide endodontic care.
Developing Changes in General Endodontic Protocols
To meet the requirements placed by the CDC to reduce transmission risk, treatment protocols have been undergoing significant changes. These changes help reduce the risk of the disease spreading to dentists, staff members, and other patients alike. Each of these changes has been developed under the guidance of specialists in pandemic management with the help of medical professionals. Among the changes made to meet the challenges of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic are:
- Increased Teledentistry: While teledentistry has been developed over the past decade, great strides have been made during the pandemic. New options are explored every day, implementing contactless dentistry using this medium. While procedures still require that the patient is in the dental office, your dentist can do most checkups remotely.
- Reduced Treatment Times: Steps have been taken to reduce the amount of time needed to properly treat different conditions in the pandemic. New techniques have been implemented to ensure the patient spends less time in the dental chair while still receiving great care.
- Same Day Treatments: With the advent of teledentistry and fewer patients actively in the office, the availability of same-day treatments has risen. The techniques that require an office visit have also been adjusted, and the amount of time needed to do them has also opened up more options.
- Contamination Control: While wearing a mask has always been a common part of medical care, the requirements have increased. Now all medical providers are required to wear a mask and practice even more detailed sanitization procedures. Measures have also been developed to reduce the chance that the patient is likely to spread contagion during endodontic care.
Each of these steps makes it possible for endodontic care to continue, even during the pandemic. There’s definitely a silver lining in all the changes that have had to be made. Each of them represents a step forward for endodontic dental technology. Once the pandemic has passed, these practices will continue, and the benefits of them will be reaped for old and new dental patients alike.
Speak To Your Dentist About Pandemic-Related Practices
Endodontics isn’t the only place where changes like these have been made. Throughout the dental and medical industry, there has been an ongoing series of changes to limit contagion. Consult with your dental provider to learn what steps their office has made to help reduce contagion risk in their clinic. Then inquire about what you can do to help when you appear for your dental care visits.