We’re all adjusting to what has become our “new normal.”
Here at The Winning Smile Dental Group, I’ve heard from many patients who aren’t sure if what they’re experiencing is really a “dental emergency.” My goal as a dentist during this challenging and confusing time is twofold:
- Make sure that all of my patients are getting the treatment they need.
- Do my part (and help you do your part) to control the spread of coronavirus by only seeing patients experiencing dental emergencies and those in need of urgent care.
The American Dental Association (ADA) released guidelines that our office is using to determine whether or not to schedule a dentist appointment. I’d like to clearly explain these guidelines so that you’ll know if you need an emergency dentist.
What is a dental emergency or “urgent” dental situation?
Dental emergencies and urgent dental situations require immediate treatment to avoid serious consequences. We will continue to see patients who are experiencing situations where:
- You are in severe pain
- An infection could spread and become a dental emergency
- There’s a good chance things will get worse without immediate treatment
In order to minimize the burden our local hospitals are experiencing due to COVID-19 patients, we will see you in our office for urgent cases.
Examples of when we’ll see you for an urgent dental situation are to:
- Remove sutures from a previous visit
- Adjust orthodontics that are causing pain or bleeding
- Replace temporary fillings that are causing you pain or that are lost/broken
- Fix or adjust dentures — particularly for patients undergoing cancer treatment
- Fill big cavities or replace fillings/crowns causing pain and bad toothaches
- Provide dental care that’s needed before an essential medical procedure
- Fix a fractured tooth that’s causing pain or that is irritating gum/cheeks/tongue
- Treat oral infections that are causing pain and swelling
- Change dressings to prevent dry socket
- Relieve pain in the 3rd molar
What is not an emergency or urgent situation?
Currently, The Winning Smile Dental Group is not scheduling appointments for routine dental care, including:
- Exams, checkups, and cleanings
- Orthodontic care — except when causing pain or infection as discussed above
- Extracting teeth that aren’t infected, decayed, or causing pain
- Filling small cavities that aren’t causing pain
- All cosmetic procedures
How is The Winning Smile Dental Group protecting you?
The Winning Smile Dental Group is going above and beyond for your health and safety
Patient safety has always been and will continue to be our #1 priority.
We take our responsibility to protect you, the rest of our patients, and our valued team members very seriously. We will continue to provide the excellent standard of care that we’re known for by always:
- Wearing full-length sleeves and launder all of our work clothing on site
- Using an autoclave (a high-pressure steam oven) to kill every known infectious organism, including coronavirus, following each procedure
- Wiping down each dental treatment area after each patient visit with a medical-grade surface disinfectant that kills all known infectious diseases, including coronavirus
- Either washing our hands thoroughly or applying an alcohol-based sanitizer between each patient
What should you do if you’re coming to see us?
If you have scheduled an emergency visit to The Winning Smile Dental Group, we ask that you assist in our efforts to make our office a safe environment by:
- Canceling your appointment if you have a cough, fever, or chills. Call us and we’ll talk to you about rescheduling.
- Practicing social distancing and limiting the number of people in our waiting room by showing up no sooner than 10 minutes before your appointment and coming alone if possible.
We will also be checking your temperature and anyone with a reading of over 99.9 degrees may be asked to reschedule their appointment.
We are here for you!
We love and value each of our patients.
We sincerely hope that you and your family stay in good health during this trying time. If you have questions about whether you need to see an emergency dentist, call us at 601-591-9718.
Just remember that if you do come to see us, our customary handshakes and hugs may be replaced with an “elbow bump” for the time being!
Dr. Lewis is a graduate of the University of Mississippi School of Dentistry. She’s a member of the American Dental Association, the Mississippi Dental Association, the Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, and the Academy of General Dentistry. Dr. Lewis is known for providing high-quality, comfortable care, while giving you a smile you’ll be proud to share with the world!