As the most Google-searched question in 2020 revealed itself, the question had to be answered. News 11's Arlette Yousif spoke with a local dentist
YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - Social distancing is a huge part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations to slow the spread of COVID.
That decision has somehow translated to fewer doctor visits and especially dentist visits.
The truth is that the dental staff is at a higher risk than the patient during a dental visit.
Previously, dental industry professionals were feared to be more susceptible to the Coronavirus due to the nature of the work they do. Being close to patients with their mouths open and in an aerosol environment is cause for real concern.
However, a recent study by the ADA finds that less than 1 percent of dentists have contracted the virus.
What that means for dental patients is that even with the higher risk of COVID for the dental staff, they are doing an excellent job keeping the virus at bay while caring for patients.
New protocol in practically every dental office includes phone health screenings, temperature checks at the door, and patients waiting in the car until they are walked directly into the room for their appointment.
According to Dr. Stephen S. Garner, D.M.D. at Gila Ridge Dental, patients in high-risk groups should always err on the side of caution and call the dental office for a phone screening before going in for an appointment. He also explains that preventative care is vital to avoid serious dental issues in the future.
News 11's Arlette Yousif speaks to Dr. Garner about dental safety measures on the Early Edition starting at 4 p.m. MST/5 p.m. PST.