Updated: Apr 15
In the midst of the corona confusion, life has become still, the world is currently on pause mode, but nature has just turned on its play mode. With the spring commencing, it has given new hope that, amidst all the chaos, life does continue, but at an altered pace. This pandemic has taught us an important lesson, DO NOT TAKE ANYTHING FOR GRANTED. No field is an exception for this, even our very own dentistry. We must change the attitude of taking things for granted, like:
Non-judicious prescription of antibiotics,
Improper sterilisation protocol,
Haphazard administration of L.A,
Lack of emergency drug kits in clinics,
Substandard level of maintaining the dental educational institutions,
WE, as dentists can collectively put an end to this by taking the smallest of concerns seriously. Albert Einstein rightly said, "Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better." The answer to all our questions lies in the question itself. The approach towards clinical practice needs to be slightly upgraded after the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are a few quick tips that can be implemented in your daily practice along with regular protocols, which we so often overlook:
Sanitizing hands with alcohol-based(60-95% alcohol) sanitizer must be made mandatory for patients and dental personnel entering the clinic.
Screening patients for high body temperature and rescheduling appointments accordingly.
Greeting patients with a "NAMASTE" is the safest way, as a handshake, especially from dental personnel may lead to iatrogenic diseases(COVID-19, FLU, etc)
“Spray-wipe-spray” technique- Use of a surface disinfectant with documented evidence of bactericidal, tuberculocidal and virucidal activity is recommended. All areas within six feet radius of the operatory should be cleaned(doorknobs, walls, etc).
E-dental appointments to prevent unnecessary crowding at dental clinics.
Consider using dental chair barriers and disposable gowns for dentists during elective procedures.
Usage of Povidone-iodine mouthwash for all patients before dental examination.
Usage of Chlorhexidine or Betadiene solutions for ultrasonic scaling, instead of water as they reduce bacterial content in aerosols.
Waterline treatment by chlorination is mandatory.
Studies indicate iodine has least or almost no bacterial resistance, hence molecular iodine mist can be sprayed in dental clinics(in controlled dosage).
Disinfecting phones with alcohol-based disinfectants after a long day of work.
The geriatric age group, our main concern now, must be treated very carefully by taking advantage of non-invasive methods like lasers and alternative medicine like acupuncture.
"When you prepare for an emergency, the emergency ceases to exist".