General Dentistry |4 min read
What Are Our Infection Safety Standards?
Before COVID-19, you may not have been aware of all our infection safety standards in place. But if there’s one good thing to come out of this pandemic, it’s raising awareness on how we prevent the spread of infection. Health recommendations like wearing a mask and washing your hands for 20 seconds, may feel new to the general population, but to us, these safety measures are the norm. At our dental office in McLean, VA, we have always followed the standard precautions… This text opens a new tab to the CDC website… for infection control and patient safety set forth by the ADA, CDC, OSHA, and local authorities. So when you return to our office, you’ll notice that not much has changed because we were already employing the highest regard for your safety and health. What exactly are these infection safety standards? Let’s explore the different ways we keep you and our staff out of harm’s way.
What are the infection safety standards?
Hand hygieneYou’ll never receive treatment from us without our clean hands and gloves on. You don’t have to worry about cross-contamination with gloves because we never wear the same pair twice. If we need to touch a drawer or fill in your chart, we take our gloves off to do so and put new ones back on. Before and after your appointment, we wash our hands to avoid spreading germs. The next time you’re in, take a look around, and you’ll notice how there’s always a sink nearby to wash our hands with warm soap and water. What’s changing: In addition to the above, we’ll ask you to wash your hands or use hand sanitizer upon arrival.
Personal protective equipmentPersonal protective equipment (PPE) is becoming a household name, thanks to COVID. But it’s not new. You can probably recall us wearing gloves, masks, and face shields at all of your appointments. Our team is trained on the proper techniques to put on and remove PPE to prevent skin and clothing contamination. What’s changing: With the reopening of our office, we’re adding another layer of PPE: gowns and shoe covers.
SafetyThis infection protocol primarily highlights injections and sharp tools, which we handle with diligent care and disposal. We ensure single-use items are discarded after your appointment and follow strict guidelines on proper care. But when it comes to safety, we understand there are dangers not seen to the eye, which is why we employ such high cleanliness. What’s changing: You can expect your appointment to run 10-20 minutes longer than usual for added safety measures.
SterilizationDr. Kazerooni uses the latest sterilization equipment to thoroughly disinfect all our dental instruments and handpieces after each patient. She even goes a step further by washing all the instrument packages before going to sterilization. Plus, our packaging is the same as the hospital uses. What’s changing: Nothing! We will keep following our strict sterilization techniques.
Water purificationWith your mouth being the first point of contact for harmful bacteria to enter your body, having clean water is essential. We use DentaPure, which purifies the water and keeps the water lines clean. What’s changing: Nothing!
Air and ventilationOur air and ventilation system helps prevent the spread of airborne diseases and maintain fresh, clean air at all times. What’s changing: We are altering our schedule to care for one patient at a time. This will help us social distance and maintain infection control. You’ll need to wear a mask or face covering when you arrive at our office.
Respiratory infection preventionPandemic or not, we advise all patients who’re or have been recently sick to reschedule their appointments. We encourage our team members to stay at home if they are unwell and to follow respiratory hygiene/cough etiquette. What’s changing: If you have been traveling, we’ll ask you to quarantine for two weeks before seeing us. When you arrive at our office, we’ll take your temperature. We’ll also screen our team’s temperature daily.
Environmental controlEvery high-touch surface (doorknobs, countertops, armrests, etc.) is disinfected between patients or has a barrier in place – for example, the plastic cover on the dental chair light switch. The disinfecting products we use are designed for healthcare settings. What’s changing: We are adding more vigorous sanitization of the rooms and common areas, including removing magazines, toys, and other items from the lobby. Pictured above is our DentaPure certificate (left), Hydrim instrument washer (top), and sterilization equipment (bottom). These are just a few ways we keep our office infection-free!
Feel safe with our McLean dentist, Dr. KazerooniAs you can see, we’ve already been enforcing the highest infection safety standards. With our dental office reopening, we’ve added a few more precautions to ensure you continue to receive dental care in a safe and trusted environment. You can learn more about our office reopening here: Full COVID Update Ready to schedule an appointment?
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