The COVID-19 crisis in Texas is still dire, which is why dentists continue to implement precautionary measures to keep high-risk patients as safe as possible. If you have chronic heart or respiratory conditions, or underlying health problems that impact your immune system, you don’t have to put your oral health on the backburner during the pandemic. By accommodating at-risk patients in Irving, your dentist is making sure that your dental hygiene doesn’t have to become derailed in an effort to protect your wellbeing. Read on to get four common concerns of at-risk patients answered, so you can safely navigate everyday tasks during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Who’s Considered “At Risk”?
Studies show that adults who are 65 or older have a seriously high risk of becoming life-threateningly ill if they contract COVID-19. In fact, the CDC has reported that eight out of 10 deaths caused by COVID-19 have occurred in adults who are 65+. Another vulnerable group of people during this time are ones who have underlying health conditions that are chronic or inhibit their immune system. These include:
- Conditions that impact the lungs, like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and lung cancer.
- Cardiovascular problems, such as heart disease, strokes, high blood pressure, heart failure, and heart attacks.
- Weakened immune systems caused by cancer treatment, organ transplantation, HIV/AIDS, or prolonged use of corticosteroids.
- Liver & kidney disease.
Should You Avoid Leaving Your Home?
The safest place for many high-risk patients is their home, because it’s a controlled and neutral environment that won’t encourage cross-contamination. If you’re able to, it’s a good idea to shelter-in-place as long as possible to limit your contact with others. That means working from home if your have the opportunity and trying not to come into contact with several different friends or family members who may not be staying as safe as you are.
How Can You Safely Tackle Everyday Tasks That Are Unavoidable?
If you have medical conditions or live by yourself, it’s likely that you’ll need to go into a public space like a pharmacy, grocery store, or doctor’s office during the crisis. In these cases, it’s crucial to be as safe as possible. Here are some tips to help keep you safe:
- Wear a mask
- Avoid touching items that other people have touched
- Have hand sanitizer handy
- Choose contact-less food delivery if possible
- Take advantage of “high-risk” grocery store times near you
- Schedule appointments and trips early in the day
Should You Still Visit Your Dentist?
Sometimes, accidents can happen that land you in the office of your emergency dentist in Irving. If that occurs, there’s no need to stress about your safety, because they’re implementing dozens of additional protocols to prevent the spread of infection, including:
- Pre-screening all patients and staff
- Longer patient appointments
- Thorough sanitizing between appointments
- At-risk patient hours
- All proper PPE
If you have additional concerns before you visit, don’t hesitate to contact them. That way, you won’t have to endure additional stress due to COVID-19 on top of the emergency situation.
About the Author
Dr. Rafiq Hirji has over a decade of experience helping patients optimize their oral health and taking care of emergency dental situations. He is dedicated to his patients’ safety and wellbeing, which is why he has put 21 additional safety measures into place in response to the emergence of COVID-19. If you’re a high-risk patient in need of dental care, we offer at-risk patient hours. All you need to do to schedule an appointment is visit our website or call our office directly at 972-546-4114.