We all know that 2020 had its fair share of hardships and “new normals.” Between shutdowns and school closures, we all had to pivot away from life as we knew it. Your dentist in Wicker Park was no different. Patients stopped coming to the dentist, perhaps because we may have been closed or out of fear. But now that we’re all open and seeing patients, we’re learning some things that this past year has taught us that are important for our patients to know as well.
When a population starts to put off dental care, a lot of the typical prevention measures are lost. This often means that problems that were once small and easy to treat were left undiagnosed, untreated, and led to bigger problems. Something that may have started as a tiny cavity can turn into a large area of decay and cause pain. Someone who may have had early-stage gum disease now has full-blown advanced periodontal disease and are at risk for whole-health complications such as heart disease. This is why those preventive dental visits every six months are so important to keep your mouth, and your body, healthy.
Even though many high-risk patients understandably shied away from seeing their dentist in Wicker Park in 2020, it’s this population that needs regular dental care the most. In fact, sometimes patients with certain health conditions are encouraged to see the dentist every three months instead of the regularly recommended six. But during the pandemic, patients weren’t getting a checkup for nine months or even a whole year. This resulted in more serious dental problems and complications that may have required a tooth extraction, root canal, or other treatments. What’s more is high-risk patients are more likely to suffer from more than one problem, which can compound the issues.
The early months of 2020 saw dental offices close, sometimes for a couple of months. In fact, the World Health Organization reports that dental offices were some of the most negatively affected health services during COVID-19. However, dentists are already required by law to have very strict sanitation practices and have added additional safety precautions such as gowns, better masks, and disinfection protocols above and beyond the already comprehensive standards. Additionally, once dental offices reopened, the FDI World Dental Federation reported that dental offices around the globe had significantly lower infection rates of COVID-19 than other healthcare workers.
So what does all of this mean? Essentially, it means that dental care is essential. It’s essential to keeping our communities healthy, preventing small problems from turning into big problems, and that it’s even more important for high-risk patients to be seen by their dentist in Wicker Park twice a year. What’s more, dentists can see patients safely.
Don’t put your dental health on the backburner. Call us to schedule an appointment today.