Virginia Dental Association urges patients with oral pain to visit their dentist, not local ER

Sabrine Jendoubi, Margot Daussat, Veronique Guillot

In this Wednesday, May 13, 2020 photo, dentist Sabrine Jendoubi, left, and her dental assistant Margot Daussat inspect the teeth of patient Veronique Guillot, during a dental appointment, at a dental office in Paris. Those with toothache that suffered through France’s two-month lockdown, finally have hope to end the pain. Dental practices are cautiously re-opening and non-emergency dentist appointments are now permitted around the country, as the French government eased confinement restrictions from Monday. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

RICHMOND, Va. (WFXR) – The newly-elected president of the Virginia Dental Association (VDA) Dr. Scott Berman has made an immediate request to the public: Go to the dentist for urgent oral care needs.

“If a person is experiencing mouth or jaw pain, the first call should always be to a dentist, before you show up at a hospital. Seeking care first from a dentist will allow most patients to have the root cause of their issue addressed more quickly and is also an important way to prevent emergency departments seeing a surge in COVID-19 cases from becoming overwhelmed. Many dentists can fit patients in immediately to help alleviate pain.”

Dr. Scott Berman, Virginia Dental Association President

According to research by the Health Policy Institute (HPI), at the American Dental Association, the use of emergency rooms for non-urgent or preventable medical care is a growing public health concern.

Evidence suggests that up to 78 percent of dental-related emergency room visits across the country could be diverted to a dentist’s office or other healthcare settings.

The VDA launched a campaign with the Virginia Department of Health back in August to encourage people to return to the dentist.

To find a dentist near you, click here.

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