Keep you and your loved ones safe as businesses begin to reopen.

On April 14, Governor Kate Brown introduced her preliminary framework for a new plan titled “Re-Opening Oregon,” announcing that more concrete details about ways to stay safe would come by May 4.

Since then, the biggest announcement was on April 23, when Governor Brown unveiled a plan to allow healthcare workers in the state to resume non-urgent medical procedures on May 1.

It was a small step forward in what has felt like a month of walking (and sheltering) in place.

While schools are officially closed for the year and there has yet to be an official announcement on when recreational and commercial facilities will open back up, there are steps we can take now to prepare ourselves for when that day does come.

Today, we’re sharing 10 ways to stay safe as we ease back into normalcy. With the proper precautions, the shift back into “real life” doesn’t have to be jarring. Read on to learn about 10 steps you can take to work, play and socialize as carefully as possible.

1. Keep your masks.

Yes, they can be cumbersome. Still, resist the urge to toss all of your masks away as soon as you’re allowed back into your favorite restaurant or retail store. It’s still smart to wear them, especially when you know you’ll be in large crowds.

Remember: Making a decision to reopen the local economy doesn’t mean the COVID-19 threat is completely eradicated. Putting on your mask takes seconds, but it can make a major difference. The same applies to using hand sanitizer!

2. Avoid crowds.

We get it. You’ve been at home for weeks without real access to the outside world. You want to attend a concert, go to the movies, or visit the farmer’s market!

While it’s exciting to think of all the things we’ll be able to do again, it’s best to avoid crowds, especially at the beginning. Continue to keep your circle small, even as you branch out a little. This particular virus spreads easily in public places, and it simply isn’t worth the risk.

3. Keep social distancing.

Along the same lines, it’s also wise to keep your social distancing measures in place as you reacclimate yourself with the outside world.

Those six feet of separation can help keep you safe and out of direct contact with someone who has the virus. As it can take more than 10 days to begin showing symptoms, try to maintain your personal space and encourage those around you to do the same.

4. Know the facts.

There is no shortage of false reports and inaccurate data crowding the internet and even taking up time on the news channels. Rather than getting drawn into the conspiracy theories and fear-mongering, get your facts from a legitimate and credible source, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

As we all readjust, remember that no one is immune to COVID-19. Rather than letting fear and dread rule, fight that anxiety with knowledge. Understand the symptoms, learn about the disease, and put preventive measures into practice.

5. Keep disinfecting your home.

Don’t throw away that bottle of Lysol you worked so hard to find at the store! You’ll still need to disinfect your home, along with any items you bring into it.

However, there are some things you can’t exactly douse with disinfectant. This article explains how to thoroughly clean everything in your home, from your groceries to your mail.

6. Boost your immune system.

At home, in your bubble, your immune system hasn’t had to fight as hard to keep you healthy and well. That won’t be the case as you resume life as you knew it before “social distancing” was a household term. Suddenly, you’ll be exposed to new people and new germs, and it will be more important than ever to have a strong defense against them.

A few steps you can take to fortify your immune system include:

  • Getting enough sleep
  • Eating whole, healthy fruits and vegetables
  • Exercising moderately
  • Washing your hands frequently
  • Minimizing stress

Don’t feel guilty about performing plenty of self-care during this time. Acts like meditating, napping, and taking soothing baths, aren’t just good for your sanity. They could also keep you well as you venture outside your front door.

7. Sleep as much as you can.

This isn’t the time to squeeze as much productivity as you can out of every single day. While it will be tempting to rush full-throttle ahead and resume your regular pace, remember what you just lived through.

Your body and mind will both need time to readjust, so take it easy. Turn in early enough to get the recommended minimum of seven hours of sleep each night. If you can’t, then take short, 30-minute naps during the day to recharge.

8. Consider working from home.

Even when stay-at-home orders are lifted and you’re allowed to go back to work, talk with your employer and see if you can still work from home, at least for the first few weeks. This is another precaution you can take to help protect yourself and those around you.

9. Minimize non-essential travel.

The month after a global pandemic isn’t the best time to book that dream vacation. There will be plenty of time to go on an epic cruise, take the extended family to Disney World, or plan a tropical getaway.

To keep flattening the curve as much as possible, stick to essential travel only, such as business trips. Otherwise, take this time to rediscover all of the local landmarks you’ve missed during your time away!

10. Call ahead to your doctor.

Even if you’re just sniffling from the pollen outside, you don’t exactly want to spend an hour in a waiting room at this time. Call ahead before you visit and let your doctor know your symptoms. You can even consider calling a virtual telehealth doctor to avoid an in-person consultation altogether!

Along the way, remember that many healthcare offices, including ours, are open for emergency services. You don’t have to suffer at home!

Just let us know what’s going on, and we can take quick action to help you treat it. Some of the most common dental emergencies include:

  • Severe dental pain
  • Wisdom tooth pain
  • Postoperative pain following a dental surgery or procedure
  • Dental abscess
  • Broken tooth
  • Knocked-out tooth
  • Lost or broken bridge

Both now and once the regulations are lifted, you can call our office to receive treatment for these critical concerns.

Practice these ways to stay safe every day!

It’s no secret that we’re all looking forward to the day when we can hug our loved ones, visit co-workers, and grab a latte from our local coffee shop again.

While that day might seem light-years away, state and federal authorities are working to make it a reality. When it does happen, it will pay to know the ways to stay safe. These 10 tips are important to implement now and even more so moving forward.

While we wait together, please call us for any dental-related questions or emergencies. Remember, we can still schedule routine appointments in advance. We’re here for you, and we miss your beautiful smiles!