(WYTV) – Dentists and orthodontists are part of the first phase of health care businesses set to reopen in a few days. Local practices are now considering their careful steps forward.
Routine dentist visits have been put on hold for the past six weeks but now, local dentists like Mark Braydich said they’re ready to get back to work.
“Excitement and then there’s also concern because we get a letter from the Ohio State Dental Board that has 17 recommendations.”
Those recommendations serve as a guideline for dentists to take proper precautions come May 4.
Braydich said a safe environment starts with the patients.
“We want to make sure the patients coming in are healthy. We’re going to take their temperature, we’re going to ask them a bunch of questions about their health history and then if they pass all that, we can make an appointment for them.”
Braydich said they plan to take things slowly. Typically, they’re open 12 hours a day. Those hours will be cut down to eight.
They also won’t be seeing anyone older than 55 unless it’s an emergency.
Orthodontists are also being careful.
“We have extended our patient time of treatment. Instead of a 40-minute appointment time, we’ll probably bump them up to a 50-minute appointment time,” Dr. Moshood Martins said.
He said they’re also practicing social distancing in the office and waiting area, and they’re using virtual consultations for those who aren’t comfortable coming in.
“Take pictures or have that Zoom time, where I can take a look at a patient’s mouth and we can view the X-rays together and talk about what to expect,” Martins said.
Part of the reason dentist’s and orthodontist’s offices were closed is to preserve personal protective equipment, but neither doctor thinks supplies will be a concern.
“We’ve been preparing for this comeback,” Martins said. “We have gowns, head covers, face masks, N95 masks. We’re prepared to come back.”
Both doctors said the most important part of reopening is ensuring the safety of their patients.
“I just want to make this place safe and follow the guidelines,” Braydich said. “If we can do that, then we’re doing the best that we can.”