Now that patients can return for non-emergency treatments like getting dental bridges in Lakewood, our team at Advanced Family Dental wants to warmly welcome back the members of our community. The ongoing pandemic has required dentists everywhere to change how they treat patients so they can provide dental care safely. At our practice, we’ve taken additional precautions to ensure that whether your appointment is for a routine cleaning or for dental bridges in Lakewood, you can feel secure knowing that your health and safety is protected.
To better protect our patients, it’s important to understand how the virus moves and is transmitted. Fortunately, a new study helps to explain how the coronavirus carries itself on the droplets released when an infected individual coughs, sneezes, speaks, or talks, and then travels around the room.
Researchers hope the study, which was conducted by a team from the University of Minnesota, will help businesses and schools reopen safely by reducing any potential spread of the virus.
Understanding the Spread
As part of the study, researchers developed a model of how these respiratory droplets travel throughout indoor spaces like classrooms, elevators, and supermarkets. Researchers also compared how well the virus was able to move around in various types of ventilation and with different spacing between people in a room.
Researchers understand that the public has received numerous warnings regarding the spread of the virus indoors. However, researchers also noted that most of the time these warnings don’t come with a clear picture of how the virus actually spreads. This makes a significant difference because not all indoor spaces represent an equal risk when it comes to contracting the virus.
For example, researchers were able to determine that rooms with good ventilation can filter out the virus from the air, but still leave it clinging to surfaces.
In a classroom setting the team tested, they conducted a simulation where an asymptomatic teacher talked for 50 minutes. The team discovered only 10 percent of the aerosols were filtered out of the room. The majority of the particles remained stuck on the walls.
“Due to the strong ventilation, we thought the room would ventilate out a lot of the aerosols. But 10 percent is a very small number actually removed,” wrote the research team.
Instead of sucking the particles out of a room, researchers discovered that ventilation actually creates a vortex that causes the particles to rotate rather than exit. As they rotate, the particles become affixed to the surface of the walls of a room.
Researchers then followed the airflow to find virus hot spots where the aerosols were most likely to buildup in a room. They also discovered that the aerosols spread significantly less throughout when a teacher conducted their lesson directly under an air vent.
The team believes that by better understanding how these aerosol droplets move around a room, businesses can provide a safer environment for their customers.
“If you have good ventilation at your place of business, and if customers follow social distancing, the risk of transmission becomes much lower,” wrote the team.
Protecting Your Health
Understanding how the virus can move throughout a room can better enable dentists to protect their patients’ health. By knowing that any potential buildup of the virus is likely to occur on the surfaces and walls of a treatment room, dentists can take additional precautions to clean those areas between patient visits.
At Advanced Family Dental, we follow and exceed all CDC, ADA, and FDA guidelines for keeping our offices clean and virus free. Know that when you sit down in one of our dental chairs, the entire surrounding area has been freshly cleaned using medical grade disinfectants.
Additionally, we screen every patient and staff member before they’re allowed back into our treatment area. Anyone who passes our front doors must answer questions regarding their recent exposure risk and have their temperature taken before they’ll be allowed back to our treatment area.
We understand that these are uncertain times where even the most routine activities now represent a potential threat to our health. That’s why at Advanced Family Dental we go above and beyond to create a safe and healthy space where our patients can still receive the outstanding dental care their oral health deserves.