Why it’s still important to keep your dentist appointment

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — There are a few changes when you walk in Westermeier Martin Dental Group in Amherst. There’s plexiglass at every counter, you are screened with questions and a temperature check, and you must wear a mask when you are not being seen by a dentist.

Doctors are wearing N95s, a face mask, and a face shield to make sure you are staying safe when you come in for your appointment.

“We already had a very high standard of care for disinfection and sterilization,” Dr. Andrew Burke, a Dentist and Oral Care Surgeon said. “I feel that we are essential and we can see our patients safely,” Burke said.

Dentist offices stayed open for emergencies during the last few months.
Starting May 31st, offices opened for routine checkups again with guidelines on how to keep patients safe.
But just recently, the World Health Organization said non-essential dental work should be delayed.

“A lot of people see a routine appointment as just getting their teeth cleaned but we are screening for all types of diseases, oral cancer, dental decay, and gum disease,” Dr. Burke said.

The American Dental Association released a statement saying it ‘respectfully yet strongly disagrees” with the WHO’s guidance.
Dr. Burke says the office is safe for people to come for their regular appointments.

“It’s more than getting your teeth cleaned it is more about the prevention of disease,” Dr. Burke said. “Especially in children, the decay can really progress quickly and as little as a few months, a cavity that was easily treatable could become more complicated if we wait.”

Dr. Burke recommends people have their teeth cleaned at least twice a year.


Article author: Rebecca Thornburg

Originally published in: WKBW-TV – Buffalo