NEW publication: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Emerging and Future Challenges for Dental and Oral Medicine
By L. Meng, F. Hua , and Z. Bian
The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that originated in China in 2019 has spread internationally and is now classified as a global pandemic. COVID-19 poses a serious challenge to public health systems around the world and as such has become a widely discussed topic in the medical professional field.
The coronavirus disease causes symptoms similar to a flu and can cause severe and potentially fatal pneumonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome. It is suspected to be primarily spread from person to person by respiratory droplets. Close contact to people is thereby seen as a risk and recommended to be avoided. This circumstance makes the close proximity of dental practitioners and their patients a potentially hazardous setting.
A cough, sneeze or the use of high-speed instruments can spread secretions into the air and surroundings. The risk of infection is therefore high for dentists and dental technicians compared to other professional settings.
How should dental practitioners navigate and manage these new challenges caused by the coronavirus? What possibilities are there to reduce the risk of infection while still being able to provide patients with the needed treatments and oral health care?
Authors L. Meng, F. Hua and Z. Bian closely examine these questions in their newly released publication in the Journal of Dental Research 00(0). They present comprehensive knowledge on COVID-19 in dental settings and compile a series of management protocols for dental practitioners and dental students.
Keywords: virology, infection control, dental public health, dental education, transmission, dental practice management