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How to Maintain Social Distancing at the Dentist’s Office

May 16, 2020

Over the past few months, you’ve likely become familiar with the term “social distancing.” According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), it means staying at least 6 feet apart from the person next to you. While this is a somewhat feasible request when visiting your local grocery store or retail business, how can it be accomplished at a dental office? A dentist in Hampton explains what she is doing to keep her patients safe while continuing to provide high-quality, personalized service.

Swapping the Lobby for Your Vehicle: The Virtual Waiting Room

Instead of waiting inside the lobby of your dentist’s office, you will instead, alert the staff of your arrival and remain in your vehicle until a team member escorts you to your treatment room. While this may seem impersonal, it follows current social distancing standards. It also allows you to continue listening to your favorite song on the radio for a bit longer!

Creating a Wider Gap Between Appointments: Spaced-Out Scheduling

By placing a larger gap between appointment times, this allows for two things: increased time spent should you require more than one dental service and more thorough cleaning after every patient so there is no rush before the next appointment. It also makes it possible for your dentist to spend more time with you should you have questions/concerns instead of having to rush off to another patient.

Seeing Fewer Faces: Minimizing the Number of Patients Each Day

Although your dentist would like to see as many smiles as possible, COVID-19 has caused most dental practices to minimize the number of visitors each day. This means there is less of a chance that harmful germs and bacteria will be carried into the office, potentially exposing others. Fortunately, anyone who does have an appointment will undergo a pre-screening process to ensure they are healthy when they arrive.

Rearranging Furniture: Creating Additional Seating Space

If you must wait in the lobby for any reason before or after your appointment, you will find that the seating will be spaced out to avoid any chairs sitting close to each other. You may also notice that protective barriers will be between you and the front desk staff to protect against any airborne pathogens.

While some of these social distancing measures defeat the goal of creating a warm and welcoming environment, trust that your dentist and dental team are going above and beyond to maintain a personalized, compassionate level of care during this time and will be eager to share their happy, smiling faces with you as soon as possible.

About the Author
Dr. Harbpinder Shevchenko is like many dentists who are working to provide a healthy and safe environment for her patients. Apart from the personal protective equipment and increased sanitation efforts, she is identifying ways to maintain social distancing among staff and visitors. Fortunately, she has implemented protocols that are successful solutions for everyone involved. To find a “dentist near me” who is taking added precautions to keep you safe, contact us at (603) 319-4415.

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