Businesses are slowly opening their doors in British Columbia with restrictions and policies in place to keep everyone safe. One of these locations that I’m the first to visit is Dream Orthodontics.
Pre-Pandemic, a visit to Dream Orthodontics would include me running a half hour late (they are so patient with me). I’d rush in with my husband and kids who I’d stick on the waiting room iPads. Hubs and I would grab a complimentary cup of coffee while we wait for me to be called in.
There would be a lot of chatting with other patients and staff and often times there was a large number of family members in the office.
I was nervous and excited after receiving the confirmation of my orthodontist appointment. Excited, because my husband and I were playing dentist from time to time when I’d accidentally pull the wire out (I really shouldn’t have been eating apple slices). Nervous because our routine would now look very different.
What was really cool, was how the orthodontist gave me a check up during the time period that we all had to stay home. I had to take multiple photos of my teeth from different angles and all the way inside my mouth. The orthodontist could then assess my progression.
After receiving notice of my next appointment, I received a list of steps I was required to follow for my visit.
Upon arrival my family and I were to remain in our vehicle. Not to mention there was a strict requirement to arrive 5mins before my appointment. Arriving any later would result in cancellation of my appointment.
It’s actually super reassuring. This method helped decrease the amount of foot traffic in and out of the office. It allowed an easier method of social distancing.
Upon arrival I had to call before entering the office. Once I was permitted in I was to sanitize my hands then go through the screening process. My temperature was taken with a touch free thermometer. I was asked a list of questions to assess if I may in fact have traces of the virus. After clearing the assessment I was to wear a mask in the waiting room.
What surprised me was that the atmosphere at Dream Orthodontics was still the same. Though I couldn’t see everyone’s smiles, their eyes were squinting, showing me that they were infact smiling. There was no tension despite these strict steps we needed to follow.
I was asked to move to the far side of the room when another patient entered. Other than that it was the average visit. Infact we all sounded like we came back from vacation, as we discussed what we did with our time in isolation. We laughed about the quarantine weight we had all put on and strange ways we interacted with friends and family from a distance. We swapped recipes we tried and new skills we acquired while isolated.
This was my first experience getting outside and around people. It was not as expected, but better! The most important thing of course is I felt safe. Especially as someone that’s high risk with asthma.
What are your stories of this new life outside? I believe that sharing these new methods of interaction can increase our feeling of normalcy and help encourage those that are afraid to get outside.