COVID-19 Information

October 6 (Newsletter #14)

You may have been wondering what happened to my weekly newsletter. I caught the COVID-19 blues. Not the virus but the result of being a good girl and isolating myself (me and my cats, lol). I have always been a glass-half-full kind of gal, basically optimistic and happy, sometimes annoyingly so. But I have found that I have somehow misplaced my joy. Since I am an ambivert (yes, there is such a thing, an introvert/extrovert combo), I am not suffering as much as the true extroverts but more than the true introverts. I am sure I am not alone in having the COVID-19 blues. You may be suffering from it, too.

Some of the things I am doing to bring more joy into my life are Zoom Happy Hours with distant friends, annoying others by over-texting, long phone conversations with my family and taking private dance lessons. All these things are helping, but it is not enough since I am spending half my life at work.

Next time when you come in for an appointment, you may find us doing silly unexpected things. I think I may tape a hopscotch down the center hall, or maybe skip between patients. Not totally sure yet, but I have to do more fun stuff at work for my sanity. You are invited to join us in our journey to more joy (I haven’t told my staff yet — you are the first to know). We will be posting on Facebook what we are doing, and I may even use my Twitter account. It is a new normal, after all.

Back to the bits you are actually interested in. We thank you for staying home if you are not feeling 100% healthy, wearing your masks properly, washing your hands, social distancing and making prudent choices of activities.

What we are doing here to keep you safe and healthy is wiping down all the public areas hourly, sanitizing any pens or clipboards before reuse, running HEPA filters in each room, closing doors to contain aerosols, using high-speed extraoral vacuums during procedures, cold fogging (newsletter #11), and wiping down every surface in the room with a hospital-grade disinfectant between patients. Plus, limiting the number of patients in the office, etc (newsletters #’s 6, 7, 9). I have already bored you silly. Working together, we can all stay safe and healthy until there is a vaccine and we have herd immunity.

Let’s choose joy.

“Pay attention to the things that connect you with joy … It’s one of the secrets to life that no one ever tells you. Joy cures everything … Joy is the antidote to fear. To anger. To boredom. To sorrow … But you can’t just decide to feel joyful … you can decide to do something joyful.”

What You Wish For by Katherine Carter


August 3 (Newsletter #13)

I trust you are doing well and staying healthy through all these COVID-19 challenges. I just want to remind you about what we are doing here to keep you protected from the virus. We not only limit the number of patients in the office and at the front desk at any time but also have a minimum of 30 minutes of room downtime between patients. We have HEPA filters with UV lights in every room, which run all day long (filtering the air three to four times an hour). We close the doors (or curtains) into the operatories when we are working to contain the aerosol generated. We cold fog each room, which also kills any viruses in the air, and do a complete sanitizing of the room before the next patient is seated. We currently have high-speed extra oral evacuators (HVE) on order for each room (some of you have met Cecil, my HVE that I use for my air abrasion fillings). For those of you who are extra vulnerable, the safest appointments of the day are the first ones of the day. Or if you really want to be extra, extra safe, the first appointment on Monday.

What you can do for us is stay home if you are not feeling well (pretty please). We would rather reschedule your appointment than put anyone at risk. And wear your mask at all times in the office, except when we ask you to remove it for treatment. Our best defense is that no virus passes our door. We can’t guarantee that given the nature of COVID-19, but we are doing the best we possibly can.

In San Diego County, we have lowered our case number from 154/100,000 to 120/100,000. So that is moving in the right direction. Case tracing has increased from 8% to 41% (goal is 70%). But for this to be effective in limiting the spread, tests results are needed within 48 hours. Now it takes about 10 days. We still have too many incidences of “community spread,” which means too many people are getting together with not enough protection — either mask wearing or social distancing.

As a state, we have a strong downward trend in cases (14-day moving average), which is very good. https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/data/new-cases-50-states

But the United States as a whole is NOT on course to get control of this pandemic. https://www.centerforhealthsecurity.org/our-work/publications/resetting-our-response-changes-needed-in-the-us-approach-to-covid-19 This is because we do not have strong federal leadership to coordinate the public health response.

“After five months of attempting to control COVID-19, the United States has emerged as one of the worst-performing countries in the world, with one in four of all global COVID deaths occurring in the US and a death rate that is among the world’s worst.” https://resolvetosavelives.org/about/press/most-of-united-states-not-reporting-essential-covid-19-data

Mask wearing or not has somehow become associated with our personal freedom and politicized. Unfortunately, this is an international public health crisis that can be minimized by proper mask wearing (cover your mouth and nose). I personally feel that wearing a mask is a sign of respect for everyone around you and tells them that you value them.


July 20 (Newsletter #12)

COVID-19 Health Safety Fee, what? I need to pay an additional fee! Isn’t your PPE (personal protective equipment) already included in your fees? Yes, it is (even though we are now paying three times as much for them! Plus needing face shields and N95 masks).

This nominal fee is to help defray the costs of the extra equipment we have needed to purchase (HEPA air filters for each room, the cold fogging system, the extra-oral high speed suctions that are on order) and the added cost of keeping the office colder so we don’t die from heat stroke. We also hired a sterilization assistant to handle the more extensive sanitizing protocols now in place and make the preappointment screening phone calls. We are doing all these things to keep you and your family safe and healthy. Our PPE protects us from you and you from us but does nothing to keep you safe from the prior patient and any dental aerosol created. Our HEPA filters, cold fogging, time lapse between patients, preappointment mouth wash and extensive sanitizing of the rooms are what keep you safe during your dental appointment. This fee is only temporary. Thank you for your understanding.

On that note, San Diego County was doing a great job on containing COVID-19, but we have lapsed and had 1193 cases last weekend (153/100,000) — OUCH!!

So, please wear your mask (yes, we all hate them). Practice social distancing. Be prudent in the size of your groups — keep them SMALL!! Hang out outside. Let’s do our part so more businesses not only can reopen but STAY open. (I, for one, like getting timely haircuts and other “non-essential” services.) We really are ALL in this together. Since this is a brand new virus to us (think HIV in the 80’s, also a virus that jumped from an animal to humans), the bottom line is COVID-19 won’t “go away” until either we have all caught it or we have all been vaccinated against it. And then, like the flu, it will mutate, but our bodies will be better able to fight it. The hygienic habits you are doing now for COVID-19 will help you not to get the flu or colds this fall, a small silver lining in this “new normal” we are now living. (Like most people, right now I have a very boring life, and I am looking forward to “living it up” a year from now!!!)

A clean limerick from Dana, our talented insurance coordinator:

So here is one thing that we ask
To help us prepare for our task
During COVID-19
Help us by keeping it clean
And do your part by wearing a mask

My wish for you is to stay safe, stay sane and stay healthy. And, of course, have some good clean fun!! (Smirk all you want behind your mask, no one can tell. LOL)


July 13 (Newsletter #11)

We are now cold fogging the rooms between patients! This is an amazing addition to our current disinfecting protocol. We feel we are in a “Ghostbusters” movie, but as far as we know, no ghosts are hurt by it. We are doing everything we can to keep you safe from others. As long as you do your bit and we do our bit, we should all stay healthy (the wealthy and wise is up to you).

Cold fogging with hypochlorous acid (HOCL) addresses the threat of dental aerosol that is generated during certain dental procedures and also disinfects into spaces that are otherwise unreachable. HOCL is one way the human body defends itself against infection. https://www.docseducation.com/blog/star-wars

Currently, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has recommended numerous disinfectants against COVID-19, which includes hypochlorous acid (HOCL). The mechanism of disinfection involves the destroying of the cell wall of viruses, which inactivates them. HOCL has been shown to inactivate a variety of viruses, including coronaviruses, in less than one minute. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7315945/

The reason hypochlorous acid is such an effective oxidant is because it carries no electrical charge. In contrast, the hypochlorite ion (bleach) carries a negative charge. Because germ surfaces also carry a negative charge, they initially repel each other. It takes up to half an hour for bleach to do the job, whereas HOCL’s lack of electrical charge allows it to penetrate the protective lipid barrier surrounding the viral particles quickly and to destroy the proteins in a matter of seconds.

HOCL, unlike chlorine bleach, is 100% safe, nonirritating and not corrosive. Various concentrations are used in the food industry, for eye and wound care, and as surface disinfectants. So, if it gets on your skin or in your eyes, it will not burn. Even if it were accidentally ingested, it is nontoxic. https://thenew.dentist/article/your-cold-fogging-questions-answered/


July 6 (Newsletter #10)

Hi, everyone!!!

We have now been open a month. YAY!! We are still getting used to all the extra gear we wear and new protocols — you are getting used to a basically empty office that feels like a meat locker. We are now a bunch of “hot” babes, and unfortunately, not in a good way. Don’t forget a sweatshirt or jacket: It will be cold in here. And you don’t need to phone from your car; just come in five minutes prior to your appointment.

As a reminder, you must wear a mask at all times in the office except during dental treatment. If you arrive without one, we will provide you with one. COVID-19 spreads by respiratory droplets that are released even when you are just talking normally. COVID-19 is a tricky disease. Only 65% of people infected have a fever. Many have no symptoms at all and can still shed the virus to you and me. On the same tangent, please always wear your mask when you are in any indoor public space, or outdoors if you can’t maintain 6 feet social distance. Do this as a sign of respect for your fellow earthlings (I am fairly certain that this virus won’t affect any extraterrestrials among us). We are all in this together, so let’s all pull together, too.

Another request is to please notify us if you have any flu-like symptoms or test positive for COVID-19 within 14 days after your appointment. Your information will be kept confidential. We appreciate your cooperation in this matter.

I found a couple of great websites. Dr. Michael Greger has fantastic videos explaining COVID-19: https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/covid-19/ He also wrote the book “How Not to Die.” If you are interested in science-based information, he is definitely a man to follow. The other site has good information if you are going to travel. It tracks the COVID-19 spread by county in an easy to read map: https://globalepidemics.org/key-metrics-for-covid-suppression/ For example, Imperial County is a COVID-19 hot spot (red), 89.9 cases per 100,000 people and rising. San Diego County is orange with 14.1 cases per 100,000, but unfortuately, we are trending up. In terms of your dental appointments, if you visit a California hot spot (currently, Imperial, Kings, San Joaquin, Colusa and Marin Counties) or travel out of state to a hot spot, please let us know. We are more than happy to reschedule your appointment to 14 days after you return. Stay safe, stay sane and stay healthy.


June 3 (Newsletter #9)

Hello again 🙂

We are officially open!!! We are all very excited to have returned to work before we lost our sanity. We are also adjusting to all the new protocols, from how we check you in when you arrive (temperature, anyone?) to the extra personal protection equipment we need to wear (bring a jacket, it’s cold in here) and the extra sanitizing that needs to be done. It is working fairly smoothly so far, with a few random hiccups; thank you for being patient with us. I am sure there will be ongoing tweaking of our systems as rules change.

Most of you will be happy to know that the goodie basket is back in operation. You just need to sanitize your hands before searching for your prize. Our daily winners now get a wonderful hot/cold neck pack, while supplies last. The weekly winners will continue to receive a $25 gift card of their choice. And, of course, we still have our monthly referral drawing winner who also receives a $25 gift card and our heartfelt thanks. We appreciate the confidence you show in us by referring your family, friends and the random person you meet in the grocery store line. And for those of you that have read all their books during the past few months, The Little Free Library is open, Monday to Friday!

We are now in Phase 3 of reopening San Diego County (hair cut and coloring time). Kudos to all of you for doing your part in making this happen! Keep on doing your bit with mask wearing (even if you don’t believe in it), hand washing and being prudent in your new social activities. Remember: Time, Space, People, Place (see newsletter #8).

The next very important step is ramping up the Contact Tracing System (Test, Trace & Treat). California Connected is our state’s contact tracing program. It is simple and anonymous and powerful. If you test positive, you submit the names of people you may have exposed to the virus, and they get contacted and tested. If any one of them test positive, the cycle repeats. Much easier on all of us if only the tested positive people are quarantined rather than everyone. The more people who participate — by answering the call — the more lives and jobs California saves and the quicker we can move on to Phase 4. I really do want to start dancing again and going to movies! Hang in there. It is just going to keep getting better!

Dr. Hansen and Her Marvelously Talented Team 🙂


May 26 (Newsletter #8)

Hey 😊

I trust that you are all healthy and happy and wise. 😊 Just want to start off on a little riff on wearing a mask, or not.* Food for thought:

Sick With COVID-19Talking
Coughing
Sneezing
YOUYour Risk of Getting Sick
No Mask→→→→→Mask= 70% very scary
Mask→→→→→No Mask= 5% amazing!!!
Mask→→→→→Mask= 1.5% perfect 😊

 

This is why everyone needs to wear a mask, because a person can have COVID-19 and not know it. Wearing a mask is respectful of others. It says, “I care.”

*Face Masks Against COVID-19: An Evidence Review Howard, J.; Huang, A.; Li, Z.; Tufekci, Z.; Zdimal, V.; van der Westhuizen, H.; von Delft, A.; Price, A.; Fridman, L.; Tang, L.; Tang, V.; Watson, G.L.; Bax, C.E.; Shaikh, R.; Questier, F.; Hernandez, D.; Chu, L.F.; Ramirez, C.M.; Rimoin, A.W.. Preprints 2020, 2020040203 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202004.0203.v1).

Like I said in last week’s newsletter, we are all looking forward to getting back to work and getting all of you back on track with your professional cleanings and other nonemergency dental treatment (who truly wants to wait until they are having pain and suffering from their teeth before getting things fixed?). We have everything in place to keep you all protected from us and each other.

Yet the two absolutely biggest parts of this equation you are in control of:

    1) Wear your mask when in public spaces, including ours.
    2) Phone us to reschedule your appointment if you are NOT feeling healthy!!!!

If you (or us) don’t come in sick, we cannot spread it to others. That is the best infection control move EVER! Thank you for your help. We greatly appreciate the sacrifice everyone gives to always wear a mask. I personally hate wearing a mask but will continue to wear it until there is a vaccine or a viable treatment for COVID-19 or we have herd immunity (hopefully, not forever).

Let’s talk about summer fun and staying safe, sane and healthy. First, two rules of thumb (love that, I have a few of my own in regard to cats, but I digress).

“The more time you spend and the closer in space you are to any infected people, the higher your risk. Interacting with more people raises your risk, and indoor places are riskier than outdoors.” Dr. William Miller, an epidemiologist at Ohio State University.

“Always choose outdoors over indoor, always choose masking over not masking and always choose more space for fewer people over a smaller space.” Dr. Emily Landon, an infectious diseases specialist at University of Chicago Medicine.

From Camping to Dining Out: Here’s How Experts Rate the Risks of 14 Summer Activities. https://www.npr.org/sections/healthshots/2020/05/23/861325631/from-camping-to-dining-out-heres-how-experts-ratethe-risks-of-14-summer-activities


May 18 (Newsletter #7)

Congratulations to everyone for doing such a great job social distancing and wearing your masks. It is a relief to start Phase II of reopening our county. I think even for us introverts this social distancing is messing with our sanity. 🙂 We are excited about reopening on June 1! I know other dentists have opened today, but as you know, it has been difficult finding N95 masks, hand sanitizer and other necessary PPE.

Like I promised you, this newsletter is about what we are doing to keep you safe and healthy. We will continue to do all the infection control protocols we have been doing for years to protect you from bloodborne pathogens. Now we have expanded what we do to include an airborne virus.

You will notice a few things different. There are only three chairs in the reception room, spaced six feet apart. There is hand sanitizer everywhere! We are staggering dental appointments so we can maintain social distancing at the front desk, hallways and reception room. All surfaces in the front office, reception area and bathroom are wiped down every hour. Each room in the office has a HEPA filter, which filters the air four times an hour.

In the back office, the doors to the operatories will be closed during dental treatment (real doors in my room, shower curtains for the hygiene rooms), to contain any aerosol missed with our high-speed evacuation system. After the procedure is completed and you are escorted to the front, the room will remain closed for 30 minutes to allow any aerosols to settle and for the HEPA filter to do its job. Then, we will go in and disinfect all the surfaces, and the room will be ready for the next patient. I have hired a new assistant to help us in keeping everything disinfected and flowing smoothly.

If you arrive really early for your appointment, please wait in your car. Please text or phone us when you arrive. We will let you know if for any reason we are running behind. Come into the office five to 10 minutes prior to your appointment. We will be taking your temperature and will ask you a few questions before seating you for your treatment.

The biggest part of keeping this disease from spreading is to treat only healthy, noninfected patients. So come in if you are feeling well. If you have any doubts, please reschedule. We all appreciate your commitment to everyone’s health.


May 12 (Newsletter #6): I need your help.

We are excited to be able to reopen the office on June 1. My staff and I will be doing everything possible to keep you safe and healthy when you come in for your dental appointments.  I will let you know more in detail of what we will be doing for you in my next newsletter. But without all of you helping us, that may not be enough.  This is about what you can do for us and the other patients who have appointments after you.

It has been estimated that 25% of people (or more) may have Covid-19 without any symptoms or be a carrier of the virus.  What that means is that 1 out of every 4 people could possibly infect you or you could be infecting others.  With our infection control protocol, we treat every patient as if they are infected, which protects all of us.  But there are many ways that you can help protect us and other patients.

Please continue to wear your mask when you go out in public, your social distancing and hand washing.  If you don’t you could come into my office infectious and possibly infect us and others. If you have not been social distancing or wearing a mask in public for the 2 weeks prior to your appointment, please call and reschedule your appointment to a time when you have done that. We greatly appreciate you doing the activities that keep us all safe and healthy.

If 14 days prior to your appointment you have been in contact with a sick person who was coughing, sneezing, had difficulty breathing, had a fever or flu-like symptoms, please phone us and we will reschedule your appointment. If you are running a low-grade fever (100*F) or are not feeling well, or are coughing or sneezing, have shortness of breath or flu-like symptoms, please reschedule your appointment to 3 days after you have no fever without medication and are healthy.

Two days prior to your appointment we will be asking you similar questions to determine if you need to be rescheduled.  Please be honest.  We would rather you reschedule than take the chance that you are infectious. When you arrive for your appointment, we will repeat the same questions and take your temperature.  If it is over 99.9*F you will be rescheduled.

We request that you wear a mask the entire time you are in the office except when we need to remove it for your dental treatment.  If you forget your mask, we will provide you one. There will be hand sanitizer throughout the office.  Please sanitize your hands upon entry.  If you bring anyone with you, please have them wait for you in the car.  The only exceptions are one parent per one child or a caregiver of an adult patient.  We are staggering appointments to be able to maintain social distancing within our office.

We also request that you notify us immediately if you get sick within 2 weeks of your appointment. All of us working together will continue to help protect the most vulnerable among us.  I thank you for that.  We are all looking forward to seeing everyone and hearing your lockdown stories. Stay safe, sane and healthy.

Dr. Hansen and her Absolutely Fantabulous Team


May 4 (Newsletter #5): Reopening Information

Hi, Everyone!!

We hope this email finds you and your family in good health. We all have been through a lot over the last few months and we are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines (eventually😊). While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our constant commitment to your safety.

As you have surely seen during your visits to our office, infection control has always been a top priority for our practice. Our strict processes have consistently made the care you receive here both safe and comfortable. We are delaying our opening until June 1st in order to have all the necessary PPE and other infection control protocols in place to protect everyone: you and us.

Our office follows the infection control recommendations made by the ADA®, the CDC and OSHA. We continue to closely monitor the recommendations if we need to change our infection control protocol. For your protection, ALL hard surfaces in the office are wiped down hourly with appropriate sanitizing wipes.

When it is time for your next appointment, you will see some changes, along with our already strict infection control protocols. For example:

  • Our office will communicate with you ahead of your appointment to ask some screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again when you are in the office and your temperature taken.
  • Do not come to an appointment if you are not feeling well, if you have been exposed to someone who is sick, if you are coughing or sneezing, or if you have a low grade temperature (over 99.9).
  • When entering the office, we will ask you to use hand sanitizer, which we will supply.
  • If you arrive without a mask, we will give you one which you will need to wear in all areas of the office except in the dental chair.
  • You may see that our reception area will no longer offer magazines, children’s toys and other items which cannot be properly disinfected. You are encouraged to bring your own iPad, reading materials, etc. Or you may ask for one which will have been sanitized prior to your use.
  • Should you choose, you may wait in your car and be texted when we are ready to bring you directly to the treatment room.
  • Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you’re offered slightly limited options for scheduling your appointment.
  • We will do our best to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the office at any one time.
  • We are limiting the first appointments of the day and the first appointments after lunch for our older patients or those who have medical issues, especially people with lung disease, heart disease, high blood pressure, auto-immune diseases or people who are diabetic.
  • We will continue to inform you about the additional steps we are taking to keep you healthy.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe and healthy in our practice. To make an appointment, please call our office 760-940-0366.

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbors and friends in the safest way possible.

We care about all of you.
Dr. Hansen and Her Stupendous Team


April 27 (Newsletter #4)

To all my healthy and (hopefully) happy patients,

We all now have had weeks of perfecting our “social distancing” and all the stuff we wear to protect ourselves and others when we do go to the grocery store. My sis told me she looks crazy in her “homemade” hazmat suit. She wears her long coat with boots and a hat, and gloves, goggles and a mask. When she gets home, she chucks it all in the garage and then takes a shower. I am sure all of us have variations on this. Wearing a mask protects others from us. And when we wash or disinfect our hands (and don’t touch our face) we protect ourselves from others. Every little bit helps keep us and those around us healthy.

When we compare COVID-19 to the annual flu, we can get a little bit complacent. The flu and COVID-19 have similar symptoms, but the latter is far deadlier. But it isn’t the flu, which we have vaccinations for, but a totally new virus which no one has immunity against. This coronavirus is five to 10 times more deadly than the flu for those between the ages of 0 and 45. It is 12 1/2 times more deadly than the flu for those over 85. COVID-19 is not only more contagious and deadly, it can cause strokes in the 30-45 year old range, and permanent lung scaring. All the more reason to continue our keeping healthy practices until we have a vaccination.

I have been listening to a fascinating book that was written in 2012 about how diseases can “jump” from an animal host to a human one. It is called “Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic” by David Quammen. I have included the review because I won’t be able to do it justice. Right now, we are living what he predicted. My wish for all of you is to stay safe, healthy and sane.

“… (He) schools us in the fascinating if alarming facts about zoonotic diseases, animal infections that sicken humans, such as rabies, Ebola, influenza, and West Nile. Zoonoses can escalate rapidly into global pandemics when human-to-human transmission occurs, and Quammen wants us to understand disease dynamics and exactly what’s at stake. . . Quammen explains how devilishly difficult it is to trace the origins of a zoonosis and explicates the hidden process by which pathogens spill over from their respective reservoir hosts (water fowl, mosquitoes, pigs, bats, monkeys) and infect humans … Zoonotic diseases are now on the rise due to our increasing population, deforestation, fragmented ecosystems, and factory farming. Quammen spent six years on this vital, in-depth tour de force in the hope that knowledge will engender preparedness. An essential work.” –Donna Seaman


April 20 (Newsletter #3)

Good Day to all my amazingly patient patients!!

I think all of us are going a bit hut nutty!! Work, work, work makes Jack (and Jill) dull beyond belief, but the challenge now is how to incorporate enough FUN in our lives when we can’t actually hang out (in person, closer than 6’) with family and friends. My daughter is having virtual happy hours with friends, watching movies with her boyfriend (she’s in Seattle, he is in San Diego), and going on walks with me (which I love — we get an hour of chatting in). She’s doing much better with the fun stuff than I am.

My sister asked me what was good about this enforced staycation. And I, being a grumpy puss, said nothing!!! She then gently reminded me of the dramatic decrease of pollution worldwide, the extra time we have to connect with people we care about, the time we have to clear our clutter, and actual time we can spend with ourselves to get clear on what we want and where we are going when this is all over. She is right (she is always right, she’s my big sister). So, even though, in general, I am a glass half full kind of gal, I am committed to being a glass ¾ full instead.

I don’t know if you have heard about Captain Tom Moore of England. When he was 99, he had a goal of raising 1000£ by his 100th birthday by walking laps in his garden. He has raised over $42 Million for the National Health Service!! And he is still walking. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8PDlgCyMZ4

Now, most of us probably would have a hard time raising that kind of money walking circles in our yard, but there are things we can do to help others that are in need. If you have any extra money, you can donate it to the San Diego Food Bank to help families in need. https://sandiegofoodbank.org/. Or to the San Diego Humane Society. Due to this pandemic, there is urgent need for people to foster animals. If you have the time and inclination, this is another great way to give back https://www.sdhumane.org/support-us/volunteer/foster/

As of right now, I plan on reopening the office June 1st. Being able to open earlier is dependent on too many variables to be able to decide right now. Because of that, we are canceling appointments in May one week at a time. You will receive a text or a phone call. I am available by phone every day between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. for you to talk with me about your concerns or dental issues. I am also coming in for pain/swelling emergencies. Stay safe and healthy and SANE!!!!


April 13 (Newsletter #2)

Hi Everyone!

I trust that even though this social distancing is driving all of us a bit bonkers, that we are doing it diligently. I, for one, miss the multiple hugs I would get throughout the day. I am looking forward to being able to do that simple act sometime in the near future. Right now, the office will be closed through the end of April. We will be contacting you to reschedule your appointment.

I am working hard on systems to keep you and us safe when the office reopens. With that in mind, the first appointment of the day and the first one after lunch are reserved for patients over 65 or those who have medical conditions that make them more vulnerable.

This can be a great time to make your mind stronger and develop good habits to avoid Alzheimer’s in the future. Go to https://www.lumosity.com/en/ for oodles of brain games to challenge yourself. And if you always wanted to learn how to meditate, now is the time. Go to https://www.headspace.com/. It’s a very gentle and easy way to learn mindfulness and at the same time reduce your anxiety, if you have any.

Even though we are being deluged with all the negative bits about this Corona Curse, there is lots of good news. Go to https://tanksgoodnews.com/ and you will find scads of feel-good stories. In fact, I bet you have a few to tell yourself. Please share them on my Facebook Fan page. We need to focus on the stories that make us feel good because that reduces cortisol (the stress hormone) and releases serotonin (the relaxing, feel-good hormone).

As of April 13, according to https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/, of the patients currently infected, only 4% are serious or critical. Here in California, we are flattening the curve, which allows hospitals to have enough resources to treat the critical cases. Yay, California!!!

Are you symptomatic? If you are unable to get tested via your personal healthcare provider, call 2-1-1. The nursing team will determine if whether you are eligible for testing. If so, someone will contact you to schedule a test.

Live long and prosper.

Dr. Hansen and Her Fabulous Crew


April 6 (Newsletter #1)

Hi to all my amazingly resilient patients!! We certainly have to be in this relentlessly changing landscape we are living in right now.

Now more than ever, we need to focus on what is good in our lives. Every day, make a list of 10 things you are grateful for and get into the feeling place of that gratitude. And limit your news intake if you want to reduce your stress levels. Don’t forget to breathe!! Breathe in deeply for four counts, hold for two, out for four (four times) and be aware of your breath moving through your body. This stimulates the vagus nerve and reduces stress. I will post the 3-Part Breath to reduce anxiety and quiet the mind on our Facebook Fan page.

As you know, my office is closed temporarily for your safety and ours. I am available for emergency treatment. Please phone the office number if you have any questions or concerns. All calls are forwarded to my cell. I will be closed for the month of April and my staff will be contacting you to reschedule your appointments. Thank you for your understanding and patience.

The following is an excellent, fun video on how to wash your hands and do social distancing. https://youtu.be/7kt06_cXPvY

It has recently been recommended that all of us wear some sort of face covering when we go to public places. Here is a link to how to make three different kinds. One requires no sewing, just a T-shirt, scissors and rubber bands.
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html

I know many of us not only enjoy shopping for clothes but are also cleaning out our clothes closets. Thredup is an online consignment/thrift store. It is amazing. My daughter and I love them. They will also accept clothes on consignment. Check them out. May be a way to get a few bucks.
https://www.thredup.com/

My wish for all of us is that we all continue to support each other and reflect on our lives and where we really want to go with them. Have a wonderful week!

Dr. Hansen