Dental procedures during pandemic safe: Study

Sun Online Desk

16th May, 2021 12:15:53 PM printer

Dental procedures during pandemic safe: Study


The SARS-CoV-2, the virus behind Covid-19, spreads mainly through respiratory droplets.

Dental check-up during ongoing Covid-19 pandemic:

Dental procedures are known to produce an abundance of aerosols — leading to fears that flying saliva during a cleaning or a restorative procedure could make the dentist’s chair a high-transmission location.

Among the 28 patients enrolled for the study, salivary bacteria were detected in condensate from only eight cases and of those, five patients had not used a pre-procedural mouth rinse.

The SARS-CoV-2 virus was identified in the saliva of 19 patients, but was undetectable in aerosols in any of the cases, said researchers from the Ohio State University in the US.

Microbes from irrigants contributed to about 78 per cent of the organisms in aerosols while saliva, if present, accounted for 0.1 per cent to 1.2 per cent of the microbes distributed around the room.

By analysing the genetic makeup of the organisms detected in those samples, the researchers determined that watery solution from irrigation tools, not saliva, was the main source of any bacteria or viruses present in the spatter and spurts from patients’ mouths, The study was published in the Journal of Dental Research.

“Getting your teeth cleaned does not increase your risk for Covid-19 infection any more than drinking a glass of water from the dentist’s office does,” said lead author Purnima Kumar, Professor of periodontology at Ohio State, IANS reported.