COVID-19: The invisible risk to oral healthcare workers in dentistry
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Oral healthcare workers (OHCW) include any professional who can work in a dental practice setting, for example dentists, dental hygienists, dental therapists, dental assistants and denturists. Dentistry, as a profession, faces an overall elevated risk of exposure to a wide variety of infectious diseases originating from viruses and bacteria. There are numerous pathways of potential exposure to these micro-organisms. Additionally, OHCW carry a very high risk of Covid-19 transmission as a result of face-to-face communication and close proximity during dental procedures with patients, as the oral cavity and the respiratory tract can contain and transmit Covid-19.