We Are Open for Routine and Emergency Care
Beginning in March 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic increased in scope and intensity, dental offices were compelled to close their doors to all patients other than those experiencing a dental emergency. Data is showing that the suspension of routine medical and dental care in hospitals, clinics, and dental offices across the country did help reduce community spread of the novel coronavirus. However, it also had an unintended consequence: patients in need of medical care and procedures deemed “non-essential” found themselves without access to care. This has created a “secondary health crisis” which must be addressed, as many Americans who delayed seeking care are now facing serious implications. As the country moves into phased reopening, La Mesa Hills Dentistry wants to assure our patients that we are open- with all appropriate safety measures- and are here to provide you and your family with the dental care you need, whether it is urgent or routine.
In order to slow the spread of COVID-19, hospitals, clinics, and medical offices across the country sent out a simple message: “stay home if you’re sick.” That message worked to help isolate those with respiratory illnesses, and the data has shown that people did stay home and these mitigation measures did have an important effect. Unfortunately, some of those people had illnesses or conditions that still did require care, some even urgently. The “stay at home” message, continuously repeated on television and elsewhere, led to the unintended consequence of delayed necessary care.
Dental conditions may originate in the mouth, but they can quickly become systemic if left untreated. Pain and inflammation surrounding one tooth can rapidly begin to affect other areas of the mouth and gums, and then spread throughout the entire body. Gum disease, in particular, is especially dangerous to leave untreated, as the bacteria in the mouth eventually enter the bloodstream, causing further infection and illness. For patients with mild to moderate symptoms, oral health problems such as these may not have seemed urgent enough to request the emergency care dentists made available throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Some patients may also have put off requesting care under these circumstances because of their own concerns about contracting the virus. However, delaying critical dental care and leaving these conditions untreated can have serious implications.
Dr. Paul Fjeldsted and La Mesa Hills Dentistry believe strongly in the importance of preventative dentistry, and have made it a priority to continue to serve our community throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We have continued to provide support through telemedicine and virtual appointments, and the State of California Department of Health and Human Services and the County of San Diego Department of Public Health have now allowed us to reopen for routine dental care. As we resume providing routine and preventative dental care, we want to assure you that we are taking all steps necessary to prevent community spread of the novel coronavirus and to keep our patients and staff safe. Click here to learn more about the steps we are taking so that you and your family are able to receive the care you need in a safe environment.
The American healthcare system is now better prepared than ever to care for the public- even during an epidemic- thanks to newly adapted procedures and practices, including more efficient operational workflows, increased use of protective equipment and enhanced staff education. At LMHD, creating the safest possible environment has always been our priority, and we continue to do so now with enhanced cleaning and safety protocols. We urge you, if you need care, please do not delay! The staff at LMHD is here to help, and we have taken the necessary steps to make sure you can come to our office with confidence that you will receive the care you need in a safe environment. Call us at (619) 469-2902 to make an appointment for your next cleaning, and if you have pain, inflammation, swelling, or other symptoms causing you discomfort, do not hesitate to contact us. Our office is open, and we look forward to seeing your smile again!