Assessment of paediatric dental guidelines and caries management alternatives in the post COVID-19 period. A critical review and clinical recommendations

Eur Arch Paediatr Dent. 2020 Jun 16;1-14. doi: 10.1007/s40368-020-00547-5. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

Purpose: The first aim of this paper is to provide dental professionals caring for children and adolescents during and after the COVID-19 pandemic with a reference to international dental guidelines. The second aim is to suggest minimally invasive treatment alternatives for caries management, minimising the risk of viral cross-infection and offering a safer clinical environment.

Methods: An evidence-based pertinent literature search of different electronic databases was performed in addition to leading global dental authorities, royal colleges, and programmes.

Results: All guidelines released in response to COVID-19 centred around minimising Aerosol Generating Procedures (AGP) impacting the provision of regular dental treatment of paediatric patients. There was an emphasis on triaging and only treating emergency and urgent cases. Special attention was given to medically compromised children in the guidelines. Detailed guidelines for the dental environment and equipment were given. This paper also summarised the relevant evidence-based guidelines for the use of non-invasive and minimally invasive caries management techniques.

Conclusion: Specific recommendations for dental management of paediatric patients during and in the post-COVID-19 era are suggested. Minimisation of AGP procedures, and case-based selection of biological, non-invasive or minimally invasive methods are recommended.

Keywords: Aerosol generating procedures; Atraumatic restorative treatment; Biological caries treatment; COVID-19; Non-restorative caries control; Paediatric dentistry.

Publication types

  • Review