We have been open and practicing routine dental care during normal business hours since June 1, 2020, after the initial stay-at-home order. Our patients’ and staffs’ safety and comfort are our highest priorities. Following recommended guidelines to reduce the spread of COVID-19, we are practicing extra safety precautions during dental appointments.
What To Expect When You Visit
When you visit our office for an appointment, we are asking you to follow certain precautionary procedures to ensure everyone’s safety.
- Please come alone. Do not bring your spouse, children, or any other people, unless you need assistance.
- Please reschedule your appointment if you are feeling ill or have COVID-19. Do not come in if you have a fever or cough, or have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19.
- If you arrive early, we may ask that you wait in your car until we are ready to see you.
- We will have sanitizer available to sanitize your hands upon check-in.
- Please wear a face-covering until you are in the patient rooms.
- Immediately before treatment, you will be asked to pre-rinse with a low concentration of hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide has shown to have antibacterial/viral properties that will protect you and those around you.
- The check-in and check-out process has been streamlined to allow easy flow with minimal contact and allow social distancing.
- There’s a lot that’s new, but we are here to walk you through it!
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. 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 Health Screening: All Tooth Spa providers have been fully vaccinated. In addition, we strictly enforce sick policies that require employees suffering from communicable illnesses to stay home from work until they have clearance by a physician to return and have received supervisor approval. Employees who have traveled to a country with a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Level 3 Travel Health Notice are required to self-quarantine for 14 days prior to returning to work. At this time, employees are required to wear masks at all times. Employees are also having their temperatures monitored daily prior to starting their shift.
2. Patient Health Screening: Due to concerns about patient and employee safety, we ask that all patients experiencing flu-like symptoms (fever, cough, sore throat, nausea, vomiting, and difficulty breathing) to reschedule their appointments. Patients will be asked to complete a COVID-19 screening form upon arrival and temperature check prior to all visits per CDC and American Dental Association recommended guidelines.
3. Sterilization Procedures: The foundation of our infection control procedures is based on requirements established by the CDC that state that all body fluids are treated as infectious because patients with bloodborne 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 disinfected 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, including usage of surface disinfectants, UV disinfecting, HoCl fogging followed by hyper HEPA air filtration. 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 snack bar items have been removed. Lobby surfaces and patient restrooms are disinfected every hour. This includes a thorough wipe down of all hard surfaces, such as door handles, doorknobs, tables, chairs, and front office counters with a disinfectant wipe. In addition, patients are advised to practice social distancing in our lobby area or wait in their cars if preferred. According to the CDC, the most important steps we can take to avoid infection from airborne diseases are frequent handwashing with soap and water and regular cleansing of highly-used surfaces with disinfectant.
COVID Response New Equipment
Our office has gone above and beyond the required dental safety standards by incorporating new equipment throughout. We are pleased to offer you these added layers of protection from coronavirus and other contagious illnesses
2. JUST OUTSIDE THE MOUTH – We have acquired Vector Vortex Extra Oral Vacuums for use to suction, HEPA filter, and UVC disinfects all aerosol just outside the mouth. These devices collect and deactivate ultra-fine airborne particles, aerosols, and vapors during procedures, significantly decreasing any contaminants in both the immediate treatment area and the surrounding environment. Any particles will go through 3 stages of manual filtration. The 1st stage metal screen for bulk particle removal, the 2nd stage HEPA air filter inside the UVC light chamber for disinfection, and the 3rd stage is the deactivating plasma chamber and large HEPA-13 filter.
3. IN THE ROOMS – We have dedicated hospital-grade hyper HEPA air purifiers in each of our treatment rooms and the reception area. IQAir’s HyperHEPA filtration is tested and certified by an independent third-party lab to effectively filter 99.5% of harmful ultrafine pollution particles down to 0.003 microns in size. This is 100 times smaller than what is achieved with ordinary air filtration technology and 10 times smaller than a virus.
4. ON SURFACES – UVC sterilization 260-280nm wavelength used to adjunctively sterilize surfaces up to 99.9% on top of our normal sterilization protocols.
5. THROUGHOUT THE OFFICE – Hypochlorous acid maker and fogger- These devices produce a strong and safe disinfectant out of salt and water! This ionized solution kills aerosolized and surfaces viral load upon contact. Each room and provider will be fogged between each patient to promote a sterile environment.
Schedule Your Appointment
Now that you know a little more about the measures we are taking to protect you at the time of your dental appointments, we hope to see you soon at Tooth Spa! We look forward to answering any questions you may have and continuing to provide you with the best dental care in and around Sunnyvale. Thank you for your understanding, loyalty, and participation in keeping our community safe and healthy!