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Central Florida Dentists Reopen Practices, Say it’s Safe to Come Back for Routine Cleanings and Exams

Photo: Jonathan Borba

Dental offices reopened this week as part of Governor Ron DeSantis’ phase one plan for recovery.

Dr. Brett Zak of Distinctive Dentistry in Altamonte Springs says it could take them several months to catch up with the backlog of patients. 

Zak says they’ve put extra safeguards in place to protect patients and staff in case of a second wave of coronavirus cases. 

“For instance we’re spacing patients out. We’re allowing more time in between patients, we’ve created a work flow where the patients almost as if you are going to a grocery store or a Publix. They’re kind of in one door and out the other. It’s kind of a work flow throughout the office.”

Zak says opening up for routine appointments is good for his business- and the health of his patients.  

He says avoiding cleanings can lead to tooth decay and gum loss and other health problems.

“There’s such a strong link between the health of the mouth and then the overall body’s health. If you have periodontal bacteria in the blood, that could lead to overall body issues which again could put you in more of a scary situation health-wise.”

Zak said they’ve put several safeguards in place including spacing out patients, not using aerosol products, and installing air filters. 

He says they haven’t run out of PPE like face shields and masks yet as they’re sharing with other offices in the Central Florida area.

If you’d like to listen to the story, click on the clips above. 

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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »