COVID19 Response

Response to COVID 19

For the latest updates regarding COVID19 please refer to the UK government coronovirus page at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

 

In light of the current situation, we are acting upon the latest advice regarding the practice of dentistry in the UK.
It is with a heavy heart that we have decided to temporarily cease normal activities and will be reducing our services, providing emergency advice and prescribing antibiotics only for our registered patients. Following advice and guidance from our governing body, the decision of whether to stay open or not has been taken out of our hands and  all dental practices in the UK will be doing the same. The aim is to do our bit in suppressing and eventually eliminating this disease.

 

We will resume our normal service as soon as is possible, reviewing the situation regularly, but until then we will be holding virtual emergency clinics from 9 am until 12 noon Monday to Friday for our registered patients.

 

Weekend emergency cover will take a similar format.

 

If you do experience a dental emergency, please contact the practice first and we will be very happy help in any way we can.

 

We are still here for our patients, just not quite in the way we would like to be, however we look forward to letting you know we have resumed our normal service as soon as we can.
Yours sincerely

 

The Spalding Dental Surgery team.

Update from Spalding Dental

20 May 2019

Current service

 

We are providing a reduced service at the moment based on guidelines set out by our governing bodies. We are here every day providing help, advice and antibiotics should you require them. In addition to this we are able to now refer any of our registered patients who have a dental emergency that we are not able to help with ourselves, to one of the Urgent Dental Centres.

 

Practice developments

 

Since the COVID 19 pandemic required us to reduce our service, we have been working very hard to develop systems and invest in equipment that will enable to us to resume our normal activities.

 

There is some interesting technology that we at Spalding Dental Surgery have adopted and are installing as we speak, to keep you and our staff as safe as possible.

 

  • We have invested tens of thousands of pounds in air purification systems in every surgery and waiting area of the practice.  These devices work by filtering the air and use UV light to kill ​bacteria and viruses. ​

 

  • In addition to this we are installing a new air extraction and ventilation system that removes any aerosol that we create ​during treatment.

 

  • We will be required to use an enhanced level of PPE (personal protective equipment) to provide maximum protection to our patients and staff.

 

The new normal

 

Discussions are ongoing as to how and what things are going to be like when we do resume normal activities. There is no doubt that for the meantime at least, it will be different from how things were before COVID 19.

As soon as there is clarity on what changes will have to be made, we will of course inform you. Here are some examples of how your vis​it to the practice MAY be different .

 

  • We will be limiting the number of patients entering the building at any one time, ​in accordance with the current social distancing requirements.

 

  • More ​communication will be carried out remotely over the telephone, ​this may include the prior checking of medical forms, discussions of required treatment and any other transactions.

 

  • We will look to reduce the time you spend (outside of the clinical environment) within the building to a minimum. Rebooking or changing appointments and any queries will be done remotely over the phone or via email and we will put extra resources in place to allow for this.

 

  • More frequent surface disinfection regimes ​throughout the practice will be a permanent feature as will the regular practice deep cleans.

 

  • We will be screening patients for virus symptoms before they arrive for their appointments.

 

  • We will need you to play your part in helping us reduce any risk to other patients and our staff by asking you to wash your hands AND use the alcohol hand sanitiser at various points during your visit.

 

  • We will make PPE available to patients to use during their visit.

 

Whatever measures are put in place may seem inconvenient at the time but they will be necessary for your safety and for the safety of our staff and we ask you for your patience with this.

 

We look forward to seeing you soon ​and thank you greatly for your patience and support at this difficult time.

 

All the staff at Spalding Dental Surgery.

Patient Guidance

Please be aware that the practice remains open and if you have any dental problem please ring the normal surgery number and we will do our very best to help you in this difficult time.

 

Why routine dental treatments are not available.

Dental check-ups and treatments involve close contact between the dentist and patient and so should not take place. Also, dentists and their teams have to avoid using tools like drills and the ones used for scales and polishes. This is to prevent them from catching the virus from an infected patient and passing it on to other patients.

Drills and other high-speed tools create a lot of ‘spray’ from patients’ mouths so dentists need to use protective clothing and equipment.

COVID-19 has a seven-day period before symptoms show, where someone wouldn’t
know they had it and could pass it on to others. If an unsuspecting patient had a filling, the spray from doing that procedure would likely infect the dentist and the nurse.

The personal protective equipment (PPE) dentists wear when using high-speed tools is currently required by hospitals treating coronavirus patients. Without this equipment dentists, hygienists, therapists and nurses are not safe to treat patients as normal.

What if I have a dental emergency?

Assuming you have not got COVID-19 related symptoms, you should call your practice.  They will be able to decide what your options are.

What counts as a dental emergency?

Urgent dental treatment

• Facial swelling extending to eye or neck.
• Bleeding following an extraction which does not stop after 20 mins solid pressure
by biting continuously on rolled up gauze or clean handkerchief (a small amount of
oozing is normal, just like if you have grazed your knee).
• Bleeding due to trauma.
• Significant toothache preventing sleep, eating or associated with significant
swelling and/or fever that cannot be managed with painkillers.

Go straight to your hospital’s A&E department if you have any of the following.

• Facial swelling affecting vision or breathing, preventing mouth opening more than 2 fingers width.
• Trauma causing loss of consciousness, double vision or vomiting.
Non urgent (may need to wait)
• Loose or lost crowns, bridges or veneers.
• Broken, rubbing or loose dentures.
• Bleeding gums.
• Broken, loose or lost fillings.
• Chipped teeth with no pain.
• Loose orthodontic wires.

What you can do to help during this pandemic and managing toothache at home

Painkillers

Anti-inflammatory painkillers (such as ibuprofen) has been shown to be effective against dental pain. Combining paracetamol with ibuprofen has also been shown to be effective.

There is currently no strong evidence that drugs such as ibuprofen can make the symptoms of Covid-19 worse, however, if you are showing symptoms of Covid-19 you may wish to avoid taking ibuprofen.

Do NOT take any painkiller if you are allergic to it or your doctor has told you it is not suitable for you.

Take any medication in accordance with the instructions given on the packet.  Exceeding the recommended dose could be dangerous.

Toothache

Some toothaches cannot be managed with medication – please contact your dentist by telephone for advice during practice opening hours or telephone NHS 111.

Good cleaning with a fluoride toothpaste and reducing sugar intake to mealtimes only will help stop decay getting any worse.

If there is a hole in the tooth, or a tooth has cracked and is now sharp or sensitive, a temporary filling can be packed into the space – these are widely available from supermarkets, pharmacies and online.

Desensitising toothpastes, such as Sensodyne, can help. Apply the toothpaste several times a day to the sensitive tooth and leave to soak in – do not rinse.

Wisdom teeth

Wisdom tooth pain is usually due to the inflammation of the gum over the erupting tooth, which can be worsened by trauma from biting. Most flare-ups can be managed with good home care and should settle within a week. Excellent cleaning around the area, even if it is painful to brush, will help to encourage healing. A soft diet, the use of a warm saltwater mouthwash as well as painkillers can help to manage any pain.

Ulcers

Although painful, most answers will heal within 7 to 10 days. Non-healing ulcers present for more than two weeks should be assessed by a dentist or a doctor.  Warm salty mouthwash is, careful cleaning, soft diet and painkillers are usually enough to manage any discomfort from mouth ulcers.

Ulcers from rubbing dentures may be helped by using denture fixatives to stop the dentures moving excessively, or by removing the dentures where possible.

Bleeding gums

Bleeding from gums is not a dental emergency. Bleeding gums is usually a sign of gum disease and will not stop until brushing and cleaning improves. Brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste for at least two minutes, concentrating especially on the areas that are bleeding. Use floss or interdental brushes to clean between your teeth every day.

Lost crown

If the crown fits back on the tooth easily and if you are confident to do so, you can try replacing the crown with dental cement purchased from a pharmacy, carefully following the instructions given on the packet. Do NOT use superglue to try and re-fix your crown.

Please be aware that the practice remains open and if you have any dental problem please ring the normal surgery number and we will do our very best to help you in this difficult time.

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