We live in very uncertain times. With the spread of COVID-19 in late 2019 and throughout 2020, we are now all living in a world of variants. Just as society was really beginning to feel like we could start getting back to normal, cases of COVID-19 variants such as the delta variant have people all over the world on edge and again considering how we live our daily lives throughout this continuing pandemic.
We know that one way COVID-19 spreads is through airborne moisture particles. When patients come into your dental office, it is understandable that they may have significant concerns about the spread of the virus within the office. The close quarters and many dental instruments (including drills and ultrasonic scalers) create a visible water spray that may contain a mixture of water, blood, saliva, and other microorganisms. These water droplets could land on surfaces and be spread to others in the office.
Minimal Cases of COVID-19 Linked to Dental Offices
While you cannot guarantee your patients that they will not contract COVID-19 from your office, there are certain practices you can follow which can help ease their mind. First, it is vital to note that there was a minimal link to dental offices even during the height of the pandemic in 2020. Government and medical agencies provided guidance and procedures which were to be followed by dental offices, and, as a whole, most did just that. That minimized the spread of the virus within dental offices.
In your effort to keep bringing patients back in who may have lapsed during the pandemic, it is essential to make them aware of all precautions you have in place at your practice. That can go a long way in making individuals feel more comfortable in visiting your practice. Some dental offices provide a complete list of procedures in place so that patients can have them on hand while others talk patients through them. It is best to listen to your patients to know which has made them feel more comfortable so that you can apply this to bringing in even more patients who you may not have seen in a long time.
How You Can Bring Patients Back
The reality is that, currently, a significant percentage of dental patients have not been in for something as simple as a routine checkup since COVID-19 really took center stage in our world. When attempting to bring patients back in, it is essential that you:
- Provide patients with the facts about COVID-19 and its variants.
- Be transparent in the efforts taken by your practice in keeping both staff and patients safe.
It would be best to be proactive in reaching out to patients who have lapsed in treatment or examinations and assure them that you are committed to keeping everybody involved safe. We live in a world where it is very easy to come across misinformation, leading to unnecessary fears and stress. So, it is essential that you provide your patients with up-to-date information on COVID-19 risks, symptoms, and transmission. Using facts is a reliable way to ease a patient’s fear and anxiety about coming into your office.
COVID-19 is, unfortunately, a part of everybody’s life that is not going anywhere soon. Even with the rise in cases this summer of 2021, it is still vital that dental practices make it easy for patients to make it in and to feel comfortable with in-office treatment. Following some of what has been stated here will hopefully make this easier on your patients.
About the Author:
Naren Arulrajah, President and CEO of Ekwa Marketing, has been a leader in medical marketing for over a decade. Ekwa provides comprehensive marketing solutions for busy dentists, with a team of more than 180 full time professionals, providing web design, hosting, content creation, social media, reputation management, SEO, and more. If you’re looking for ways to boost your marketing results, call 855-598-3320 for a free strategy session with Naren. You may also schedule a session at your convenience with the Senior Director of Marketing – Lila, by clicking https://www.ekwa.com/msm/ or simply send a text to 313-777-8494.