Social distancing and self-isolation techniques have been vital measures taken across Canada to help slow down the spread of COVID-19; not to mention a lockdown on non-essential services. With that said, how does a proper oral healthcare routine play in all of this?
According to the president of Ontario’s Dental Association (ODA), those across Canada are encouraged to keep their teeth (and mouths) as healthy as possible; especially during a time when many may be eating more snacks and sugary items while quarantined at home.
As per Dr. Kim Hansen, Canadians should be placing more attention to brushing and flossing, as they may be eating more than they are accustom to during the day. Hansen also stated there might be an increase in appointments that handle serious dental health issues once office do open, not only because of enhanced snacking, but also due to regular cleans and checkups being delayed through COVID-19 lockdowns.
It’s important to note, that while most dental offices are closed currently, due to provinical lockdown meausres, most dentists are offering services for dental emergencies, as well as providing advice over the phone and via video. Canadians should not hesitate to reach out if they have any concerns around their oral health. Additional, phone calls should be made prior to going to the ER/hospital.
Hansen further stated the unprecented times Canadians live in, as dentist across the nation do not have much info around how to move forward during a virus pandemic. Dental offices across the country will be taking note around practice changes that occur in differing provinces that are reopening economies and easing on lockdown measures, first. As some Canadian provinces will be opening their offices sooner than others, many will be looking to these dentists for best practises and answers. Most dental associations will have a task force to gather answers on the best way possible to serve the public.
Hansen did note that it will be a far different environment when dental offices do re-open. The main thing is that all dentists across Canada are working to ensure that they keep everyone safe once they can start handling patients again.
In the meantime, Canadians can help to boost their oral health by brushing and flossing regularly, and try and snack on those sugary items in moderation. Your teeth (and dentist) might thank you in the long run!