Could treatment for chronic infections such as periodontitis be a preemptive strategy for mitigating the risk for infection of future viruses like COVID-19? Casey Hein, MBA, BSDH, RDH, examines this in part three of this three-part series.
Editor’s note: In part 1 and part 2 of this series, published in October and November, respectively, I proposed that untreated periodontitis could compromise immunity or contribute to complications of pandemic-scale viruses such as SARS-CoV-2 and offered two biological mechanisms to explain this potential association.
Treating periodontitis has always been important, but during this pandemic I suggest that we need to become more strategic than ever in caring for our patients, especially those who are at risk for periodontitis. In this third and final part of the series, I suggest four aspects of progressive periodontal therapeutics that could make a difference in the periodontal stability of our patients:
Casey Hein, MBA, BSDH, RDH, is an internationally recognized speaker and extensively published author with over 40 years’ experience as a dental hygienist in private practice, public health, education, and government. She first began speaking about periodontal-systemic links in 2003 and founded the first publication on oral-systemic science, called Grand Rounds in Oral-Systemic Medicine. She is a pioneer in implementation of periodontal-systemic science, medical-dental collaboration, and providing primary-care services traditionally delivered by physicians and nurses in dental offices.