We understand that there are questions about how the COVID-19 pandemic will impact your orthodontic care. As these rapidly changing circumstances evolve, we are still here to support you. Please reach out at any time if you have questions about your treatment, concerns, or a problem you need help with. 

Why are your offices closed?

As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads, we are following the recommendations of health and government officials. Following guidance from the American Association of Orthodontists, we will avoid all elective procedures at this time. An elective procedure is defined as a procedure that does not involve treating a medical emergency to preserve life. 

While our offices provide safe and standardized care for patients and hospital level sterilization protocols, we are all working together to do our part to help “flatten the curve” and keep our community safe.

How long will your office be closed?

Our office is closed until at least April 30th, but we do not have a firm reopen date at this time. We will be closely monitoring this situation and keeping our patients updated if that changes. As soon as we are told when we are allowed to reopen, we will be in contact with all patients to re-schedule appointments as needed.

Our team will be available to assist patients by phone, email, and live chat from 9am-5pm Monday – Friday. 

What does this mean for me? 

As we wait for this situation to pass, please brush and floss thoroughly and maintain your dental health as normally instructed. Always remember to wash your hands before placing and removing your aligners or elastics. 

If you are wearing aligners: 

  • Please make sure to keep wearing your current aligners as instructed. 
  • If you no longer have aligners to continue to your next week, simply reduce your aligner wear to a retainer phase of 10-12 hours per day. (This will ensure that your teeth stay in place and help your aligner last longer.)
  • When our office reopens, we will create a new digital scan for new aligners.
  • Make sure to use your chewies and bite and hold to seat your aligners in areas where you may see visible space between your tooth and the aligner. 
  • For best use, bite into your chewie for 10 seconds and work it around your teeth lightly – biting and holding for 10-minutes at a time.
  • Keep your aligners clean and avoid all drinks other than water while wearing them. 

If you are wearing braces or an appliance: 

  • Keep good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing three times a day. 
  • Now is an especially good time to avoid forbidden foods to avoid any breakage!
  • Your braces will continue to straighten your teeth all day and night throughout this time.
  • If you wear elastics, continue to do so as directed. 
  • Properly wearing your elastics is important because it will continue to correct your bite.
  • When our office reopens, we will continue your treatment.

Virtual CheckUp

Even though our offices are closed, your progress and concerns are always our top priority. In order to serve you best even during a public health crisis, we have added a new feature on our website that allows for patients to be seen virtually. We ask at this time that patients only use this feature to address concerns or questions.

To get started with you Virtual CheckUp, click here

We’re supposed to be washing our hands more often – should I do anything different with my aligners, retainers, elastics, etc?

Please continue wearing your aligners and rubber bands as directed to maintain your progress. If you are currently wearing retainers it is crucial to continue to do so. Please follow standard recommendations by washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water before and after adjusting your aligners, retainers, or elastics. 

Feel like they need an extra wash, just in case? Wash them with soap and water using an old toothbrush. Clean, rinse, and dry your appliance just like it’s a dirty dish! 

I’m supposed to get my braces off – now what?

We understand that having to wait to remove braces is a real bummer for patients anxiously waiting to see their new smiles! Unfortunately, the removal of braces causes a production of aerosol particles that potentially contain biological materials. While our practice adheres to hospital level sterilization protocols, we are taking all necessary precautions to protect both our patients and staff. We will resume removal of braces when we are certain that it is safe to do so.

I have a routine appointment coming up – when will I be rescheduled?

While all routine appointments are important, retainer checks, growth monitoring, recall examination, or new patient consultations become elective at a time like this.

We will reschedule all appointments when it becomes safe to do so. 

I’m scheduled to start treatment soon.

We are excited for all our patients to start their orthodontic journey, and can’t wait to get started once this situation has stabilized.

My retainer or aligner is broken or lost. 

Give us a call, send us an email, or use our chat function to get in touch with us! We’ll contact you back with a solution!

I have a poking wire that’s really irritating me. What do I do?

Call us! We will work with you to find a quick resolution. Luckily, common orthodontic problems can usually be fixed at home.

Not a patient? Curious about orthodontic care? Have our office see your case without having to leave your house– for free!

Try a free, no-obligation Virtual Consult to help you plan your orthodontic care! Your Virtual Consult takes less than 5 minutes to complete, and you’ll get personal feedback from Dr. Appel about what your options are. 

To get started with your Virtual Consult, click here →

Stay updated on the latest by following us on social media.

Thank you for your understanding. Each and every one of you is a part of the Appel family. We wish you all health and encourage you all to be safe until we see you next, which will hopefully be very soon.

Sincerely,
Dr. Steven Appel, Dr. Andrew Appel & Dr. Andrea Dopp

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