Dr. Izadi and the team at Izadi Orthodontics have always followed and maintained the office infection control guidelines recommended by the ADA and OSHA for the safety of our patients and their health. In advance of opening after quarantining for the coronavirus we have added additional protocols and safety measures to prevent the spread of infection and enable you to feel comfortable when visiting with us.
Please download and fill out forms to bring with you to your visit.
How Soap Kills The Coronavirus
COVID-19 Office Protocols: What to Expect
As you are aware, we are going through difficult times due to the global pandemic caused by a novel virus known as the Coronavirus (COVID-19), which is also known as SARS-COV-2. Unfortunately, this illness has caused a variety of business disruptions and shutdowns, and we have not been immune from that.
This is a respiratory illness caused by this virus that can spread from person to person. COVID-19 symptoms can range from mild (or no symptoms) to severe illness, and you can become infected by coming into close contact (about 6 feet or two arm lengths) with a person who has COVID-19. COVID-19 is primarily spread by human contacts, and you may become infected from respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs sneezes, or talks. Please read the following summary according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC).
Protect yourself and others from COVID-19
- There are several vaccines available at this time for certain groups of individuals. We highly recommend getting vaccinated as soon as it becomes available to you. Dr. Izadi and his staff are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 at this time.
- The best way to protect yourself is to avoid being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19.
- Stay home as much as possible and avoid close contact with others.
- Wear a cloth face covering that covers your nose and mouth in public settings.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
- Wash your hands often and correctly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or use a hand sanitizer containing at least %60 alcohol.
- Practice social distancing!
- Buy groceries and medicine, do telemedicine to discuss things with your physician, and complete banking activities online when possible.
- If you must go in person, stay at least 6 feet away from others and disinfect items you must touch.
- Get deliveries and takeout, and limit in-person contact as much as possible.
- Prevent the spread of COVID-19 if you are sick.
- Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.
- Avoid public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.
- Separate yourself from other people and pets in your home as much as possible.
- There is no specific treatment for COVID-19, but you can seek medical care to help relieve your symptoms.
- If you need medical attention, call ahead.
- Know your risks for severe illness! Everyone is at risk of getting COVID-19.
- Older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions are at higher risk for more severe illness.
- Having an antibody toward this virus does not necessarily mean you have immunity from this illness.
Our primary goal is to continue providing excellent orthodontic care for all of our patients in an even safer environment. We were proudly among the first offices to conduct more disciplined OSHA regulations in our office starting in February of 2020 and closed our office before the Governor mandated the stay-at-home order. After careful evaluation of the situation, the following provisions have been revised in our office, and new guidelines are being followed vigorously.
We are open for care after closing for 10 weeks in April, May, and early June 2020. We appreciate your patience and cooperation in working with us regarding any deficiencies that you may experience in these difficult times until we get back to our routines. We also appreciate and look forward to any reasonable suggestions that you may have in order to facilitate your continued orthodontic care.
Enforcing CDC Guidelines
The following CDC guidelines are enforced by Dr. Izadi and his staff while we remain in the COVID-19 Pandemic:
If the patient feels sick, running a fever, or has dry coughs, please call the office immediately to cancel the upcoming appointment. You must wait for the patient to feel healthy for at least two weeks before you can call to reschedule. As always, we will be scheduling a designated chair time for each and every patient’s visit, and therefore a doctor’s note will be required in order to waive any no-show appointment fees.
Our Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) needs to be more aggressive than ever before, and it will be much more time-consuming to regulate and disinfect all the areas before we can see our patients. As a result, we will be scheduling our patients based on their specific categories of care with the allowed time for each particular visit. Our routine procedures and orthodontic maintenance visits are almost non-aerosol generating and less time-consuming. We will schedule these patients on the same day to reduce potential exposure and patients’ wait time.
The aerosol-generating procedures; which usually require longer visits will be scheduled on specific days and will be assigned to designated individual treatment rooms. These rooms are now utilizing the newly purchased High Vacuum Extra-oral Suction as needed. They are very effective in removing major droplets and aerosols produced by the nature of needed specific orthodontic or dental procedures.
These procedures usually require the usage of high-speed drills and air/water syringes for spraying air and water in the patient’s mouth. These vacuums are known to be very effective in removing the aerosols and filtering out the air with special High-Efficiency Particulate Absorbing (HEPA) filters and ultraviolet light.
Please watch the video clip for additional information!
Upon arrival in the parking lot, you must call the office from your car. You will be greeted at the entrance by an assigned orthodontic assistant who will be working on you or your loved ones. Please make sure that everyone is wearing a mask (it’s a law in Maryland at this time).
While you remain in the waiting area, the designated technician or assistant will be going over the recent medical history, handle the treatment card, take the patients’ temperature, provide hand sanitizers, get the supplemental COVID-19 consent form signed, and discuss briefly as to what we will be rendering for the minors. If everything is clear, we will escort the patient to the clinical area to render the treatment.
For our initial consultation visits for children, we will allow only one parent to be present with the patient in our waiting and treatment areas, and we will gladly do a virtual connection (Zoom or FaceTime) with other parent/s so that he/she can stay fully informed with our diagnoses, treatment plans, treatment costs and to answer questions.
For all routine visits, we would be delighted to have the patients’ attendants wait in our waiting area, however until we are able to get a better handle on this virus, we have to respectfully ask everyone to wait in their cars. With outdoor extreme temperatures, we certainly understand how uncomfortable it may be, and we apologize in advance but again this is a recommended guideline by the CDC to emphasize social distancing and to reduce exposure as best as possible.
If you feel your child really needs you inside the waiting area or the clinic for emotional support, please let us know so that we may arrange it. Please be reminded that we are vaccinated, and so as some of our patients and parents, but we have not reached herd immunity yet. Therefore, for the safety of others and a possibly unknown variant of the virus, we have to still abide by the recommended CDC guidelines in order to be considerate and reduce accidental exposures.
As soon as we are done rendering the treatment for the minors, we will call the parents or attendants for a pick-up at the door, and we will then schedule the next appointment. It is best to always stay near the office in your car to reduce wait time for your loved ones in the waiting area as soon as they are ready to be picked up and help with social distancing.
We have replaced our HVAC filters with quality medical-grade HEPA filters and added ultraviolet lights to effectively kill and destroy viruses and bacteria that may be present in the air. We have two strong units that will be recirculating and filtering the air at all times. Again for our aerosol-producing procedures, negative pressure will be created near the oral cavity by utilizing the high extraoral suctions as well.
All patients must wash their hands, brush really well and rinse with mouthwash at home before coming to the office. Our toothbrush stations will be closed indefinitely unless you are asked by the accompanied assistant to rinse with a special hydrogen peroxide-inclusive mouthwash provided by her. The protocol is to swish and expectorate the mouthwash back into the disposable cup in order to dispose of it gently in the sink, followed by rinsing the sink with water and spraying it with disinfectants by our sterilization staff. Please make sure to keep “splashing” to a minimum.
Please keep your mask on at all times before and after treatment procedures. If you feel like you need to cough or sneeze without having your mask on, please use your elbow or the inside of your shirt/jacket to stop the droplets from being released into the air. It is highly recommended to be mindful and not to sneeze or cough freely.
It is imperative to call us and notify us ahead of time if the patient has any broken devices or brackets, as we need to schedule those appointments accordingly; otherwise, we will not be able to fix the problem. Repairs generally require clean-ups and spraying air and water in the patient’s mouth, something that we may not be prepared to do, so the treatment progress may fall behind.
At all times in the office, please DO NOT put on or take off your rubber bands, try to remove or touch aligners, braces, or retainers that have been in the mouth, or try to grab them from the instrument tray while you are in the office. You should not touch your mouth (saliva) or face under any circumstances when you are in public to prevent contamination of surface areas.
Again, Dr. Izadi and his staff are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. However, we remain very alert and responsible for checking our own temperatures upon the start of the day and will leave in case of any suspicious COVID-19 illness. We will render appropriate testing if need be so that contact tracing can be performed in case of any positive results. We will close the office if we think it’s necessary and appropriate.
Our game room, unfortunately, will be closed indefinitely until further notice, again to prevent cross-contamination. Please kindly explain to your children that they should not try to enter that area.
Please ask our front desk for a cup of water in case you are thirsty. We highly discourage touching all unnecessary surfaces as much as possible.
We will be monitoring the bathrooms as best as we can, but please be considerate and caring toward others by not spitting in the (public)/our bathroom sinks. Please prevent spattering/splattering as best as possible around the sink after hand-washing for at least 20 seconds with lukewarm water and the special antiseptic soap in the dispenser (singing the “happy birthday song” slowly twice!) Please turn off the faucet and open the door handle by utilizing a paper towel after you wash your hands.
As always, we are trying everything within our control by utilizing proper equipment, professional alcohol-based sanitizers, hospital-grade disinfectants, and exact and monitored sterilization procedures to prevent any cross-contamination. We are making sure that by continued education, reviewing and emphasizing extreme and vigorous OSHA standards with our entire staff, and with the help of our patients to remove and prevent the spread of this novel and insidious virus.
However, please be advised that going into public areas, including any dental, medical, or orthodontic offices, may still accidentally expose you to viruses and bacteria. We must share our care to overcome this devastating and uncomfortable situation!
We are treating all patients at this time, but we are not completely back to our routine schedule. If you do not have an appointment, please call the office as soon as possible to schedule an appointment.
Please regularly visit our site for additional changes or modifications. We would appreciate it if you thoroughly but yet gently review these guidelines with your children ahead of time to educate them without making them overwhelmed, upset, or scared until things get hopefully back to normal. If we can loosen the guidelines safely and gradually, we will be doing it as best as possible.
You may print, sign, and bring the consent form with you in order to save time when we see you for your next appointment. We sincerely thank you for taking the time to read this important update, and we certainly hope to get back to the pre-corona era as soon as possible. Please stay well, make the best out of it, and be safe!
Dr. Izadi and team