April 30, 2020
Hello to all our patients, families, and friends:
We are starting to turn the corner! This past Monday, Gov. Abbott announced the reopening of many businesses starting May 1st. We want to let you know how Orthodontic Specialists will be reopening and some of the changes that we have implemented to follow new guidelines from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and our Texas state regulatory agency.
For the foreseeable future, the new normal will be very different from the ‘old’ normal. The standard and quality of our treatment results is the only thing that will not change – we will still provide great smiles and healthy bites that will last a lifetime if you wear those retainers! As we mentioned before – while the results will be the same, HOW we do this, HOW we work, and HOW we greet and meet each other will be very different – as it should be. We can and will provide the treatment you want in a way that is safe for everyone involved.
First, we have divided the office staff into 2 teams so that we may open both of our Seguin and San Marcos offices full time from Monday through Friday. We will observe social distancing by keeping patients seated in the clinic at least 6 feet apart from one another. In order to catch up on the number of missed appointments and have everyone seen as quickly as possible, we will be assigning your next appointment and contacting you to let you know the date and location of the appointment. Expect these calls to start next Tuesday, with appointments starting on Friday, May 8th. If you have a conflict, call the office to reschedule. We understand that everyone is ready to be seen as soon as possible.
State regulations require that ONLY patients will be allowed into the office after careful screening. Once you arrive in the parking lot, we will take temperatures and a short health history for every person that enters the office. Our entire staff will also be screened at the start and end of each work-day to ensure that everyone in the office is healthy. We have employed some pretty cool technology to help us here! You will be able to use your mobile phone to make this process easy when you arrive at the office. Look for the signs in and around the buildings when you arrive. We will post a short video on our website and Facebook page showing this process before your next visit. For all patients, adults, and children, we will escort you from your car into the office. For minor children, feel free to use FaceTime during the appointment if you want to follow along with their time in the office.
Our uniforms may look a little different than the ‘old’ normal. Our new attire is clinical jackets, masks, and face shields! We plan on having a great time no matter how HOT we may get underneath all this stuff. That’s why the office may seem a little cooler – so dress warmer if you are cold-natured.
We have updated and enhanced our office A/C units to provide extreme UV filtration that will provide the highest quality air by removing any particles that may find their way into the offices. We have created an isolated room in each office for certain procedures to be performed so that we can ensure everyone’s safety. At the same time, a few procedures will not be performed in our office until we feel it is entirely safe for everyone involved. We will let you know if this impacts your treatment in any way.
We truly appreciate how friendly and understanding everyone has been and we are ready to get everyone back on track. We look forward to seeing all of you in the coming weeks.
Dr. Clark Colville, Dr. Michael Rasmussen, and the entire Live Life Smiling Team
April 14, 2020
Greetings to all of our wonderful patients and families,
We are experiencing an unprecedented time in American health care. At Orthodontic Specialists we have taken the COVID-19 crisis very seriously from moment it came to our attention; closing our offices on March 16 to avoid any community spread. We believe this has helped to reduce the burden on our medical colleagues. In addition, we’ve invested in our local community by donating masks to our local police officers in an effort to keep them healthy and safe.
Most of you have heard from one of the doctors by now, following our review of every patient’s treatment to make sure you are set for the next few weeks while we wait to hear that we can start seeing patients in our offices. We appreciate how gracious everyone has been. Thankfully, orthodontic treatment is a lengthy process and taking a short break will have only a minor impact on the total treatment time for the vast majority of our patients.
Currently, Governor Abbot has closed all dental offices in Texas until April 22nd. Guadalupe and Comal counties are staying at home through the 30th.
The decision of when to re-open the orthodontic office is a complicated one. We must ensure the safety of our patients and our team. We have already started making some necessary changes. We are upgrading our HVAC system to add office-wide air purification in both offices. Our sterilization procedures continue to meet the highest standards. No doubt, we will look a little different when you return. Masks and face shields will be the norm for the foreseeable future. Our waiting areas will look a little bare and overly clean. We are ‘embracing’ all the changes!
We believe that the most responsible thing we can do for our community is to reopen when the Governor permits AND when we have done all we can to protect our patients and staff. We are following state and local trends to get a general idea of the projected date and we will continue to provide updates by email, Facebook, and our website: www.DrColville.com.
If you have an emergency or concern, please call or text our doctors (Dr. Rasmussen at 512-867-5124, or Dr. Colville at 830-556-1411).
Please share kindness and love with one another! It’s amazing to see the way our community has come together in order to fight this invisible enemy. Our amazing staff is ready to see everyone’s smiling faces again. Thanks for your patience and remember to BRUSH YOUR TEETH!
Dr’s Colville, Rasmussen and the entire LIVE LIFE SMILING team…..
March 23, 2020
Dear Parents and Patients,
I am sure all of you are aware of the virus that is spreading around the country. We have taken this very seriously from the first moment this came to our attention and closed our offices on March 16 to avoid any community spread which will reduce the burden on our medical colleagues. Thankfully, orthodontic treatment is a lengthy process and taking a short break will have only a minor impact on the total treatment time for the vast majority of our patients.
The Texas governor has followed up by closing all dental offices until April 21, 2020. As of today, that is the most current news that we have as to when we may re-open to be able to continue your treatment.
Dr. Colville and Dr. Rasmussen will be contacting every patient in the practice to review their treatment and will determine if there is anything that requires attention prior to reopening the office. We understand that the situation is changing daily and we will keep you updated on our Facebook page and website, www.drcolville.com.
If you have a painful emergency, please call or text Dr. Colville at 830-556-1411, or Dr. Rasmussen at 512-867-5124.
Thanks for your patience and keep 6 feet away from everyone!
Dr. Clark Colville and Dr. Michael Rasmussen
Orthodontic Specialists of Seguin / San Marcos
Frequently Asked Questions
Will Orthodontic Specialists be closed for the Coronavirus?
- Governor Abbott has issued a state-wide order for all non-emergency procedures to be halted until April 21st. This is in an effort to preserve personal protective equipment (PPE) such as masks, gloves, etc. for use by hospitals. We are happy to do our part to help combat this virus and will resume normal business activity once it is deemed safe for the community.
How does the Coronavirus affect my treatment?
- The short answer is that it depends on your treatment. The good news about orthodontics is that teeth move slowly. Likewise, our doctors have always used the best equipment to take advantage of moving teeth in a healthy and stable way. In general, teeth will continue to move in the right direction during this time of closure. However, “in general” is not how we run our practice. Our doctors tailor each treatment plan precisely to your individual needs. Therefore, our doctors will be looking over every patient’s individual treatment plan and personally calling them with an update to answer this question.
How will I get in touch with Dr. Colville or Dr. Rasmussen if I need them?
- We want you to know that we have your back in this crazy time. Therefore, our doctors will be personally calling each and every one of our patients during the time our office is closed. If you have an urgent question or painful emergency, please call or text one of the doctors on their cell phone. Dr. Colville’s number is 830-556-1411, and Dr. Rasmussen’s number is 512-867-5124.
Governor Abbott in his executive order allowed for emergency patients to be seen. Does my situation qualify as an emergency?
- While orthodontic emergencies may not feel life-threatening, there are a few that need to be addressed. The questions we will ask are: Is it painful? Is it harmful to the patient? Can we walk you through treatment over the phone? In general, painful wire pokes, broken appliances (not broken brackets), and trauma to the teeth, mouth, or gums qualify as emergencies.
Does a broken bracket qualify as an orthodontic emergency?
- Under Governor Abbott’s executive order, this is something that we will have to address when the great state of Texas allows us to see patients again. Please use orthodontic wax to protect against discomfort and give one of our doctors a call if the situation becomes painful. Please, stay away from hard, crunchy foods, ice, chewing on pencils, and anything else that could damage your brackets.
What do I do if I truly do have an orthodontic emergency?
- If you have an orthodontic emergency, call or text one of our doctor’s cell phones. They will triage your emergency and, if possible, walk you through treatment virtually. If they deem it is necessary to see you in person, they will arrange for an emergency appointment while taking all precautions recommended by the CDC to avoid COVID-19 transmission.
What are the doctor’s cell phone numbers?
- Colville 830-556-1411
- Rasmussen 512-867-5124
I want to get Invisalign or braces for myself or my child. Can I still do that?
- Yes, we know people still want healthy, beautiful smiles. Therefore, during the time in which our office is closed, we will be doing virtual consults. While an in-office consult with a doctor is of paramount importance to getting the best smile in the shortest and safest way, our doctors can get you started on the process by telling you approximately what the treatment will look like and how long it will take. That way, you can hit the ground running when our office is open for treatment again.
Can I do my appointment virtually?
- In some situations, yes. As our doctors look at your individual treatment plan, they may reach out to schedule a virtual appointment. If you have Invisalign, this may look like us mailing your next series of aligners or having them available for pick up. We will take advantage of virtual technology as much as possible to keep your treatment on track.
If I have rubber bands, do I keep wearing them?
- Yes, but do not buy or borrow rubber bands if you run out. Our doctors choose the strength and size of rubber band precisely for your needs. Therefore, rubber bands from another source will not work for your treatment. As our doctors reach out to our patients, they will let you know if you need more. We will make these available to be picked up or to be mailed directly to you.
I have an appliance in my mouth like a Herbst, Expander, etc. Do I need this to be taken out?
- This answer depends largely on your treatment plan. Our doctors will give you their recommendation when they call. However, in general the answer is no. These devices offer the most efficient, healthiest path to a beautiful smile, and they will continue to work during this downtime.
How can I help?
- We’re trying to be a part of the solution. People need hope and positivity. Therefore, if you have an uplifting or funny idea for a social media post, send that to Dr. Rasmussen at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our slogan is “Live Life Smiling,” so we’re going to be posting something uplifting every day during this crisis to help people do just that. Like and Follow our Facebook page to get these daily updates at https://www.facebook.com/ColvilleSmiles/.
What is Orthodontic Specialists doing to help?
- One of the most important things we can do right now is keep hospitals supplied and ready to respond to the healthcare needs of the community. Drs. Colville and Rasmussen are in close contact with the local health authorities. One thing that our office is equipped to do is to help with N95 mask shortages, the masks doctors need in order to be able to work on patients with the Coronavirus. We are currently looking into ways to use our 3D printers to print mask components should the need arise. Together, we are better than alone and can accomplish so much more. That’s why Orthodontic Specialists has and always will put our community first.