We have always complied with strict OSHA-mandated protocols to maintain a highly sterile environment within our dental offices. These guidelines were created to safeguard against the spread of severely contagious diseases such as tuberculosis and measles, and they are equally effective in managing the spread of influenza and coronavirus. Below is a summary of the steps currently in place to ensure patient and employee safety:
1) Employee Protocol: We strictly enforce sick policies that require employees suffering from communicable illnesses to stay home from work until they have written clearance by a physician to return and have received supervisor approval. Employees are instructed not to report to work while they are experiencing respiratory symptoms such asfever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, bodyaches, chills, or fatigue.
2) Patient Health Screening: Due to concerns about patient and employee safety, we ask that non-emergency patients experiencing flu-like symptoms (fever, cough, sore throat, nausea, vomiting and difficulty breathing) and patients who have returned from travel to a country with a CDC Level 3 Travel Health Notice in the past 14 days reschedule their appointments.
3) Sterilization Procedures: The foundation of our infection control procedures are based on requirements established by the CDC that state that all body fluids are treated as infectious because patients with blood-borne infections can be asymptomatic or unaware that they are infected. This includes body fluids in airborne droplets from coughs or sneezes. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) used in our office, which includes gowns, eye-protective wear with side protection, face shields, masks and gloves, are designed to ensure that no blood or body fluids can be passed between staff and patients. These items are washed and/or discarded between patients to mitigate any patient-to-patient transmission. Strict surface sterilization procedures are followed to clean and disinfect all operatory surfaces between patients and, after each use, all dental instruments are cleaned and heat sterilized in steam autoclave machines in individual sterile pouches.
4) Common Area Disinfecting: As a result of the current coronavirus concern, we have taken added precautions in the common areas. All magazines and pamphlets have been removed. Lobby surfaces and patient restrooms are disinfected every 30 minutes. This includes a thorough wipe down of all hard surfaces, such as door handles, door knobs, tables, chairs and front office counters with Cavicide, a CDC-approved commercial sterilization agent. In addition, the area is sprayed with disinfectant, and hand sanitizer is available to all patients in the lobby and back office area.
According to the CDC, the most important steps we all can take to avoid infection from airborne diseases are frequent hand washing with soap and water and regular cleansing of highly-used surfaces with disinfectant. We recommend that all our patients take these basic precautions. More information can be found on the CDC website, provided here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
Home » Blog » Into The Thick Of It, The Skinny On Toothpaste
This article from Freedom Village Dental in Jacksonville answers some common questions about toothpaste.
What kind of toothpaste should you use? There is no one-size-fits-all product on the market. One patient might be interested in a whitening toothpaste, and another may need something for sensitive teeth.
There are tons of toothpaste choices in any grocery store, from those aimed at children to so-called natural toothpastes. You want to make the best choice for your teeth, but it isn’t always easy to make up your mind.
What’s In Toothpaste? Different types of toothpastes have specific active ingredients that make them work. Fluoride is by far the most important thing to look for. But there are other ingredients; here are some of the more common ones.
Detergents. Sodium lauryl sulfate is not only in toothpaste, but in other personal care products like shampoo. Sometimes it’s called Sodium laureth sulfate or sodium lauryl ether sulfate, and makes products foamy. Some people are sensitive to it, and some consumer advocacy groups say it can be hazardous. There are toothpastes that don’t have it.
Whiteners. The most common toothpaste whitener is hydrogen peroxide, but there are others, like polyphosphates. They do a modest job whitening teeth, but to get a really white smile, try professional whitening.
Desensitizers. Some people’s teeth are more sensitive to hot and cold foods than others. And some are more tactile-sensitive. Used on a regular basis, desensitizing toothpastes can be very effective, but ask us for a recommendation first.
Plaque fighters. A toothpaste ingredient called triclosan is believed to fight plaque and gum inflammation. While it seemed promising at first, more recent studies indicate triclosan may contribute to antibiotic resistance, and disrupt hormones and the immune system.
Always read labels when shopping for toothpaste, and make sure your selection has the American Dental Association label. If you see it, it means the ADA considers it safe and effective.