As Connecticut begins its phased reopening, Sweet Tooth is preparing to open its doors in order to attend to the oral health needs of our patients in the safest way possible. Since mid-March, we have remained closed for all but dental emergencies in an effort to “flatten the curve” and allow us time to adapt our infection control procedures, protocols, and equipment. Our plan is to start seeing patients with urgent and emergent needs over these next two weeks and open fully for routine wellcare appointments in June.
Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and in the wake of Coronavirus, we have made significant changes to the protocols of our office based on recommendations from the CDC, OSHA, and American Dental Association. We wanted to share some of the efforts our office is making to help protect our patients and team:
- Our reception area is closed (that means no video games – sorry!!), so we will ask you to remain in your car and give us a call when you arrive. Our team will review some COVID-19 related screening questions over the phone and call when we are ready to escort you inside. If you or anyone has any symptoms of COVID-19 please do not come to our office and call to reschedule.
- We think it’s a good idea to take you and your child’s temperature at home before leaving your house, but temperatures will be taken of everyone entering the office with a touchless thermometer as well. Hand sanitizer will also be offered upon entry.
- We kindly ask that each patient only come with one parent or guardian and no siblings (unless they also have an appointment). We are trying to maintain social distancing and minimize the number of people in our small office at a time.
- Our team members will be wearing masks at all times, and we require that families coming for appointments also wear masks. Masks are not required for children under 2 or those who cannot tolerate wearing one.
- In addition to our usual masks and gloves, you will see our clinical team wearing extra personal protective equipment including face shields, lab coats, and scrub caps – but we promise we’re the same friendly team under all that gear!
- We have reduced the number of hygienists working at a time which will allow for greater spacing in our hygiene bay. To help compensate for lost appointment times, we will now be open Fridays through August.
- Cleaning appointment procedures have been modified to significantly reduce the aerosols produced.
- We have added additional cleaning protocols to disinfect surfaces, door handles, and the patient bathroom on a regular basis.
- Several medical grade HEPA air purifiers have been added to our clinical area.
- Our office will no longer offer magazines, books, toys, etc. since those items are difficult to disinfect. Patients can feel free to bring one of their favorite toys from home if this will make them feel more comfortable during the appointment. You might want to bring a sweatshirt too – we will be cranking the AC this summer with all the extra layers of PPE required!
To make an appointment, or confirm existing appointments, please call our office or send us an email. We ask that you please be patient with us as we navigate how to best reschedule all of the missed appointments while still properly staggering patients and allowing sufficient time for disinfection between families. We are happy to answer any questions you may have about our new protocols and safety measures and we look forward to seeing you again soon!
Dr. Erica and the Sweet Tooth Team