HealthEd

Dental Hygiene During Coronavirus: How to Avoid the Dentist’s Office

Osmosis Team
Published on May 5, 2020. Updated on Sep 15, 2020.

Today’s guest post from The Teeth Blog shares tips and best practices for taking care of your teeth and avoiding unnecessary trips to the dentist during the COVID-19 pandemic.  

The ongoing global pandemic situation has placed everyone on high alert: anxiety is running high, people are experiencing a strange combination of stress and boredom day-in, day-out, and there’s a whole new set of things to think about because of the lockdown—nothing seems simple anymore. Now imagine adding dental issues to the mix—how to get dental care is a tough question to address during these hard times. 

To avoid having a dental episode, maintaining your dental and oral hygiene is vital. With good oral health, you won’t need to visit the dentist, and you can generally stay safe indoors. Below are some of the ways you can avoid the dentist’s office during this pandemic.

 

How To Maintain Healthy Teeth During The Lockdown

Until the lockdown is over, it’s important to keep your dental health top of mind, whether that’s with the help of special dental treatment like teeth aligners or mouth rinse. You must try to maintain your dental health by:

You must try to maintain your dental health by:

  • Brushing: it is advised that you brush twice daily with a soft bristle brush to avoid hurting your gums and causing further problems. Make sure you clean all parts of your teeth for about 2–3 minutes.

  • Toothpaste: make sure your toothpaste contains fluoride as this ingredient helps significantly in preventing tooth decay. 

  • Flossing: do not forget to floss, of course, in slow and gentle motions to avoid gum injuries.

  • Reducing sugar: avoid excessive sugar intake, especially in a time where dental visits are not possible. 

  • Limit acidic food and drinks: you also have to limit your intake of acidic beverages like soda, energy drinks, and food, to avoid the acid build-up that weakens tooth materials, thereby causing holes in your tooth cavities.

  • Mouthwash: get yourself a good mouthwash to help reduce acid in the mouth, clean areas brushes cannot reach properly, and also help strengthen your teeth.

Osmosis illustration of dental health tips.

What to Do If There Is A Dental Emergency

Even when practicing good dental hygiene, there is no telling whether you might have a dental urgency in the course of the lockdown period because nothing is guaranteed. The first thing to do is to identify what is considered a dental emergency at this time, and they include: 

  • Tooth fracture that results in pain or that causes soft tissue trauma

  • Third-molar pains

  • Severe dental pains from inflammations in the pulp

  • A localized bacterial infection which results in pain and swelling in the infected area

  • Dental trauma with displacement or avulsion

  • A dental treatment required before having a critical medical procedure done

  • Surgical post-operative osteitis or a dry-socket dressing change 

  • Examination of abnormal tissues

  • Cases of final crown or bridge cementation, lost temporary restoration or broken restoration or temporary restoration, causing gum-related irritations. 

Osmosis illustration of a person with toothache.

If what you are experiencing falls within any of the emergency dental cases mentioned above, it’s appropriate that you contact your dentist first for a brief study and examination over the phone, if they’re available. As with doctor’s appointments, it’s not advisable to go flying to the dentist’s office without first ascertaining if there is truly a need for it.

Your dentist can analyze and weigh the situation to decide what needs to be done. If the urgency can be sorted out without the need to be at the dentist’s office, they may recommend the following.

  • Medical prescriptions can be written or refilled and sent to the patient’s email 

  • Online appointments can be requested if possible and scheduled as many medical facilities now use “telehealth,” which involves online chats, video conferencing, and so on. 

  • Routine appointments can be rescheduled to a less risky time and date.  

For urgent cases that can’t be sorted that way, it is best to consult with the dentist to know the final decisions and the next step to take.  


Non-Urgent Dental Treatment

Just as there are urgent cases, there are also non-urgent cases which include: 

  • Routine dental cleaning and preventive therapies

  • First or initial oral examinations or periodic examinations

  • Aesthetic dental procedures

  • Restorative dental procedures

  • Orthodontic procedures that do not involve acute issues of pain, infection and the likes that are immediately harmful to the individual 

  • The extraction of asymptomatic teeth

  • Routine check-ups 

For any non-urgent dental treatment, it is advised that patients simply speak with their dentists to reschedule, as these cases are often simple and can be easily managed from home. 

The top health priority of everyone is to stay safe and protected from COVID-19. However, while staying protected, you should not forget to maintain general hygiene, most especially dental health, to ensure you have a dental-emergency-hitch-free stay during the lockdown. Furthermore, since there are movement restrictions, people are advised to stay healthy orally by taking the necessary steps to avoid taking any unnecessary trip to the doctor’s office, that can expose you to the virus.

About The Teeth Blog

The Teeth Blog is a small company founded by a team of teeth enthusiasts to talk about everything related to dental health, tips, and dental products.



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