Our New COVID Safety Office Updates
While many things have changed operationally at Markham Orthodontics, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety. Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice. Our infection control processes have been modified to conform with new guidelines.
We are not simply meeting, we are exceeding recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We actively follow the evolving messages of these agencies so that we are up to date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued.
We have invested in new equipment and technology to make our dental office an exceptionally safe place for our patients and our team. Here are some of the changes and technologies we have recently adopted for your health and safety:
1. Dental Aerosol Extraction Units
Dental Aerosol Extractors utilize a self-supportive arm to position near the source with a powerful fan to draw in dental aerosol particles into the filtration system. The system releases the filtered air back into the surrounding room therefore improving the indoor air quality of the dental office. They have high quality filters such as HEPA Filters (up to 99.97% efficiency on particles as small as 0.3 microns- such as COVID-19 virus) and ULPA Filters (up to 99.9995% efficiency on particles 0.12 microns and larger), and activated carbon filters for chemical fumes.
2. Medify Air-Purifier Units
The Medify Air MA-112 uses three levels of filtration to catch and remove allergens and pathogens, such as viruses. The high-efficiency H13 TRUE HEPA filter is tested to removed 99.9% of particles down to 0.1 microns- such as the COVID-19 Virus. This medical-grade filter (HEPA H13) easily catches pollen, dust mites, and other tiny airborne particles you can’t see, such as microbes and viruses. Substantial carbon filter with carbon pellets remove toxic odors, smoke, and formaldehyde. The anion generator produces negative ions to charge particles and trap them inside the unit and give the air a fresh feel.
3. Cold Fogging with Hypochlorous Acid (HOCL)
Currently, the US Environmental Protection Agency has recommended numerous disinfectants against COVID-19, including hypochlorous acid (HOCl). HOCl is an ideal disinfectant and sanitizer because it is nontoxic to surface contact, non-corrosive, effective in various forms, and relatively inexpensive. HOCl is most likely the mosteffective disinfectant for coronaviruses in the dental office. HOCl is an endogenous substance in all mammals and is effective against a broad range of microorganisms.HOCl is a powerful oxidizing agent. In aqueous solution, it dissociates into H + and OCl – , denaturing and aggregating proteins. HOCl destroys viruses by chlorination by forming chloramines and nitrogen-centered radicals, resulting in single- as well as double-stranded DNA breaks, rendering the nucleic acid useless and the virus harmless. A fogger takes a solution and creates a small aerosol mist, ideally less than 20 μm in size, to disinfect an area. HOCl fogs are highly effective in the microbial disinfection of surfaces. HOCl has uses in many industries from farming and restaurants, regarding food, to health care applications, including chronic wound care and disinfection.
In addition to the use of HOCl as a liquid-based disinfectant, fogging with hypochlorous vapor has shown virucidal activity against numerous types of viruses and bacteria. Using HOCl vapors through a fogging machine is an excellent way to disinfect operating rooms or dental operatories in which aerosols were produced during dental procedures. HOCl is one disinfectant that, when combined with adequate personal protective equipment, screening and social-distancing techniques, hand washing, and high-volume evacuation suction, helps very efficiently to eliminate the transmission of COVID-19 in the dental setting.
4. Mouth Rinsing with Hydrogen Peroxide
Prior to any dental procedure, we ask our patients to rinse their mouths with Hydrogen Peroxide solution- a mouth rinse that is very effective in killing COVID-19 virus if present in the
5. And More…
• All team members are properly trained in infection control measures, including the new guidelines from CDC regarding COVID-19. They all have adequate PPE (personal protective equipment) such as: N-95 masks, surgical masks, face shields, head coverings, gowns and gloves
• Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients.
• Our admin team will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions.
You’ll be asked those same questions again when you arrive at the office.
• We take every employee’s and patient’s temperature before entering the office.
• For your protection, we ask you to enter the building with a face mask on.
• We ask you to use hand sanitizer when you enter the office. You will also find hand sanitizer conveniently located in various places in the office for your use. Hand washing with anti microbial hand soap is also available.
• We ask you that you text or call our team upon arrival. It is preferable that you wait in your car (if possible) until you are notified that we are ready to see you.
• We ask that only the family member receiving treatment enter the office. Therefore, our reception area is no longer a “waiting area”.
• For social distancing purposes, we have removed all the furniture from the reception area and we no longer offer magazines, and unnecessary articles, since these items are difficult to clean and disinfect. No more coffee and beverages- sorry, we know how much you will miss these!
• We have plexiglass dividers at the front desk to minimize exposure between patients and team members.
• We are transitioning to “touchless” administrative procedures, employing technology necessary to operate a touch-less system. We will obtain insurance updates and credit card on file (securely stored and encrypted) so we can reduce contact as much as possible.
We look forward to seeing you again and our amazing team is happy to answer any questions you will have about the steps we are taking to keep you safe during your visits.
Please contact our office by calling or texting 916-924-8970 to schedule an appointment. Thank you for your patience, we appreciate the privilege to be your orthodontic office! We value your trust and look forward to seeing you!