In It Together

A community sourced archive,
documenting COVID-19’s impact
on dentistry

Sponsored by Patterson Dental

Many in the dental community have been affected by COVID-19 and want to share their stories.

As a result, the ADA is launching the JADA+ COVID-19 Monograph—a digital collection of stories, reflections, and accounts from any perspective, in any format, including articles, essays, podcasts, videos, graphics, and photos—that is open to all contributors. Submit your COVID-19 story here.

Stories by Region

Emails to Patients During COVID-19 – Dr. Clayton

I started e-mailing my patients every Friday since we we had to close down last March. The e-mails have become a journal of sorts with info, humor and shout outs to the U of Michigan. I have received more positive feedback from my patients than anything else in 40 years of practice. Here are just three e-mails.

April 17, 2020


Hello everyone. I wanted to get out another email before the end of the week but every day I wake up and I think it's Tuesday. Seriously, I thought we all might hear something from the government by the end of this week since big picture planning seems comes in two week blocks of time. At this point I am waiting on the next proclamtion from our governor to get some guidance. In addition I'll
be continuing to monitor the reccomendations from the American Dental Association and the  Arizona State Dental Association. We are continuing to see patients for emergencies a few
mornings a week.

I'm not sure "I just needed to get out of the house" qualifies as an emergency. If things get dire, you could always watch the Netflix series "Tiger King". You will quickly appreciate the value of good dental care. Personally, of the entire cast in the show, I would have felt the most comfortable treating the tigers. Stay safe and healthy!

Dr. Marshall Clayton

September 25, 2020

Hi. I hope everyone had a good week. Here is an inspiring story for all the
married patients in our office. A husband and wife from Ecuador recently set the Guinness World Record for the oldest couple at 214 years (he is 110 and she is 104 ). This year they celebrated anniversary number 79! Their secret for a long happy life is, loosely translated, "he always asks for directions". Twenty one great grandchildren and one great great grandchild. Impressive stats -they are going to make the playoffs for sure.

With the elections coming up you might think people would know the difference between the left and right. However, at least a few times a week a patient will call with a dental issue and when asked if it's on their left side or right side, they will answer "not sure, you mean if I'm looking at you?". I'm not sure where this confusion comes from and I'm glad it didn't extend to my orthopedic surgeon. Anyway, back when we went to live sporting events (not as cutouts) they played the Star-Spangled Banner. Whether the American flag was in front of you or behind you, whether you had good seats or bad seats and whether you knew the words or not, you had your RIGHT hand on your heart. Everytime.

This hand
lines up with the the right elbow, the right ear and yep, the right side of your mouth. Everytime. Now please don't make me come back and have to explain the difference between the top and bottom.

Have a great weekend and stay safe.
Dr. Marshall Clayton and staff

P.S. Continue to check in at your appointment by calling/texting 480-689-8732. Also please don't come too early in this hot weather as we are having everybody wait in their cars until we come get you.

November 13, 2020


Hi. Whoever said "may you live in interesting times" never envisioned the year 2020. The elections drag on and the pandemic is raging while setting new records around the nation and globally. Even with a low fatality rate, at 1 00K plus cases/day in the U.S., our country is still going to lose a lot of people. On the positive side, the vaccine from Pfizer/BioNTech has shown to be 90% effective which is better than expected. There is still a long way to go and the vaccine will only be one of many steps but perhaps we can at least start to see a road back to normal. In the meantime do your part and mask, wash and distance.

A patient came in this week after "recementing" a crown with Gorilla Glue. Kudos for bravery and fortunately we were able to to get it cemented properly. Hint -if you have to go to Home Depot for oral care please rethink your options. A dental DIY project that can work is pulling a baby tooth. If a child will cooperate (and of course you are the parent) grip the tooth firmly with a square of tissue. Push it one way and hold for a few seconds. Then push it in the opposite direction and again hold it for a bit. Repeat as necessary. Call us if the tooth is being stubborn and you're starting to sweat.

Apparently Michigan decided not to show up for their games as of late so the football season has been canceled which frees up a lot of my time to watch TV on Saturdays. I thought it might be appropiate to switch to Marshall University (undefeated and top twenty!) but I don't have any more room in my closet for new shirts. Anyways, check out The Queens's Gambit on Netflix. The story is about an orphaned girl who turns out to be a chess prodigy. Really well done.

Stay safe and have a good weekend. Dr. Marshall Clayton and staff

P.S. Continue to check in by calling/texting 480-689-8732. Also please wait in your car until we come out and get you.


Dr. Michael Clayton
General dentist in Scottsdale, AZ

Topics: Practitioners, Region–West, Creative writing

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