The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an unprecedented global public health crisis. Dental health professionals, manufacturers and regulatory bodies are facing some critical challenges as they continue to support the provision of dental care in the UK.
Dental practices are already highly skilled in infection control, with well-established protocols that are regularly checked and audited against government standards. However, since practices have been given the green light to reopen, infection control and patient safety is in the spotlight as never before. It’s now become vital for practices to communicate with and reassure patients about the practical steps that are being taken and the updated procedures that have been put in place.
What is coronavirus?
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by a previously unknown strain of coronavirus. Coronaviruses are enveloped viruses known to infect both humans and animals. In humans they are responsible for illnesses such as the common cold through to more severe respiratory infections, including bronchitis and pneumonia.
COVID-19 is thought to be transmitted by small respiratory droplets, dispersed through sneezing and coughing. As the droplets circulate, they can be inhaled or land on surfaces that others may come into contact with, these people can then become infected when they touch their eyes, nose or mouth, causing the virus to spread quickly. In addition, close proximity to an infected person, whether they’re symptomatic or not can increase risk of transmission.
We already know that coronavirus can remain active on surfaces for up to 10 days, and dental chairs are constantly exposed to blood, saliva and bodily fluids. Cleaning and disinfection of the whole chair from top to base unit, after every patient, is critical in helping protect patients and staff.
Having stood idle for at least two months, dental unit water lines (DUWLs) should also be recommissioned according to local guidance (HTM01-05 and SDCEP), in order to clear the line of any biofilm contamination and to ensure water quality is of a sufficient standard.
Fighting the fight
Belmont’s comprehensive range of hygiene and care products is specifically designed to ensure the safety of staff and patients in the practice environment:
- B100 chair upholstery cleaner: effectively removes stubborn stains and keeps dental chairs hygienic and in optimal condition.
- 300 hard surface disinfector and upholstery cleaner: a fast-acting cleaner that’s bactericidal, yeasticidal and effective against enveloped viruses, including coronaviruses.
- B700 daily biofilm preventer for DUWLs: quick and easy to use and supplied in a pre-measured dose, ensuring compliance with HTM 01-05 guidelines.
- B900 DUWL periodic shock and test treatment biofilm remover: effective against a range of bacteria while reducing infection risk through direct contact or inhalation of aerosol mist.
The COVID-19 outbreak has highlighted just how easily infections can spread. Prevention starts with thorough hand hygiene and is supported by effective cleaning and disinfection of treatment centres and hard surfaces. Understanding how infections are transmitted makes it easier to combat the spread and provide a safe environment for patients and staff.
To see the full range of Belmont Hygiene & Care products click here.