Dental workers still waiting to resume as Massachusetts reopening continues

Hampden County

LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WWLP) – For the last two and a half months, we haven’t been able to get our teeth cleaned. But hair salons and barbershops have been giving haircuts since Memorial Day.

Dr. Kevin Coughlin, Owner of Ascent Dental Care told 22News that he believes that dentists closing down dental care isn’t helping anyone.

“It makes no sense to me whatsoever. In my personal opinion, I don’t’ see any advantage of it being 2 weeks or 3 weeks or 4 weeks until you have a vaccine the risks are going to be there,” said Dr. Coughlin.

Dentists can only see patients for dental emergencies. Waiting areas are off-limits and patients must wear a mask until the dental procedure begins.

You also have to complete a screening evaluation and have your temperature checked. When local dental offices are allowed to resume normal cleanings, expect to have to go through the same safety procedures that patients are doing now for emergencies.

Ascent Dental Care hopes to get all of its patients back in Phase 2. Dr. Coughlin told 22News they’ve had to postpone more than 2,000 appointments. He credits his team members for coming in during the pandemic, and that’s saved his business.

Dr. Coughlin told 22News, “They’d risked their own families, their own families, Without them coming up to the plate and helping I’d be out of business.”

Dr. Coughlin said they’ve expanded their hours and will be open on Saturdays going forward. The first one is tentatively scheduled for June 15.

That’s assuming Gov. Baker allows them to open in Phase 2.

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