Dental care availability at our Surrey practice
A week ago today, the country entered its second lockdown to help reduce the spread of the Covid-19 virus. We all hoped that it wouldn’t come to this but it became clear that something quite drastic needed to be done as numbers started to rise exponentially. This will be a worrying time for many businesses, despite financial help from the government. Whilst some business closures might be frustrating for their customers, the first lockdown showed that it could have even more serious consequences.
During the first lockdown, all practices were made to close, including our own Synergy Woking dentist. Across the country, some people struggled to get emergency dental treatment and many had to manage by using painkillers for a few months. It is fair to say that the oral health of the nation probably deteriorated during this time as routine check ups were not allowed and minor problems were unable to be treated. Inevitably some problems would have worsened over time.
Thankfully, there are differences this time around and a number of essential businesses are being allowed to open. This includes dental practices such as ours. This will come as a relief to both dentists and their patients across the country.
Most dentists are still working through a backlog of cancelled appointments from the first lockdown and are having to prioritise emergency cases over routine appointments. This will inevitably mean that some oral issues go undetected until they cause discomfort. We are all doing our best to reduce the backlog in these difficult times and we ask our patients to please bear with us whilst we do.
What services are available?
Synergy Parkside offers our usual range of services but patients should bear in mind that those requiring urgent treatment are likely to be given priority. We are sure that you can understand this and would want to go to the ‘top of the queue’ yourself if you were in pain with a very bad toothache.
We don’t like to see our patients suffer, so if you have a dental issue that is causing a problem, please do contact our Woking practice straight away for an appointment. Please also remember that emergency appointments are not only for those in severe pain, although they will be prioritised. Any issue such as a niggling toothache that isn’t too painful, or a badly chipped or broken tooth requires prompt treatment. Don’t wait until you are in a lot of pain and call us as soon as you can so that we can find you a suitable appointment.
Is going to the dentist safe?
We do understand that some patients might feel a little wary about attending any medical clinic, and dentistry does involve close up work which would be an ideal way for the virus to spread. Following the first lockdown though, there have been a number of restrictions put into place in addition to the already stringent systems that previously existed to prevent cross infection.
In addition to the very visible hand sanitisers and social distancing measures, dentists are able to obtain sufficient PPE this time around to enable us to carry out procedures safely. Additional time (sometimes referred to as ‘fallow time’) is also allowed between patients so that the treatment rooms can be thoroughly cleaned before the next patient enters. This last measure does, unfortunately, mean that we are able to see less patients than before the first lockdown, but we are sure that you understand that safety must come first.
It may be a little while before things are close to being back to normal at dental practices, but the news of a new vaccine has raised hopes that it might be sooner than might have been expected. We ask that you remain patient during this time and be assured that we are doing all that we can to reduce the backlog and that we are still available for you.
There is much that you can do at home to to reduce the risk of dental problems. Whilst we can’t legislate for accidents etc, you can control some of the other circumstances that could lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Make sure to continue brushing your teeth twice a day even if you are out of your usual routine due to being at home. Add flossing to your regime as this will help to remove food and bacteria from between your teeth. Finally, try to keep sugary foods and drinks to a minimum, replacing them with tooth friendly ones as far as possible.
If you require an emergency appointment or have any questions regarding attending our practice, you can contact Synergy Parkside by calling us on 01483 766355 or by using the form on our contact page. Please continue to stay safe!