Nearly a year into a global pandemic, Zoom fatigue and isolation, I recently discovered a gem on the Upper West Side worth smiling about– Central Park West Dentistry.
While seeing people face-to-face is not a high priority these days, I was due for a dental cleaning and booked my first appointment. Although there was some initial apprehension about removing my mask outside my apartment, I was immediately put at ease with the office’s cleanliness and the staff’s positive attitude.
Yes, both locations are open!
CPW Dentistry has two locations: 25 West 68th Street (between Central Park West and Columbus) and 25 Central Park West (entrance between Central Park West and Broadway). While most offices in the city were shut down during the height of the pandemic last year, CPW Dentistry was committed to caring for its patients and community. So the office on 68th Street remained open for emergency visits and virtual appointments, with one dentist, one assistant, and someone managing the phones. Since June 2020, the office at 25 Central Park West has also been open for appointments.
CPW Dentistry was very accommodating towards my busy schedule, and I was able to find a slot within the week I called. They are even open evenings and weekends.
Aside from wellness cleanings, the offices offer digital x-rays, fillings, crowns, implants, dental sealants and wisdom tooth removals, among an impressive list of services.
When I arrived, the receptionist greeted me and then took my temperature and oxygen levels. The waiting area had hand sanitizer within reach and the seats were marked to follow proper social distancing guidelines.
With everyone wearing masks (in addition to the face shields and full PPE over their scrubs), it’s usually tricky to tell if someone is smiling at you, but the staff made sure everyone had a warm welcome, despite the rainy weather outside.
Meeting Cailin and Dr. Piamonte
Dental hygienist Cailin made sure I felt safe even after removing my mask. She gave me a thorough rundown of the cleaning process, so I knew what was in store for me. She also told me that if I felt uncomfortable during cleaning to raise my hand (I never raised it except to check my phone for messages!)
When I asked about sanitizing, Cailin was great at pointing out the extra steps the staff took to keep the area immensely clean. Before Covid, the office always maintained a high level of cleanliness but have added new protocols to keep both patients and staff safe. Medical-grade HEPA air filters in every room are visible examples of one new safety measure. Cailin told me they are also working behind-the-scenes to thoroughly disinfect between patients and make sure all of the guidelines are being followed.
Throughout my cleaning, Cailin used The ReLeaf, which was another safety measure designed to reduce any aerosol risk. It is a small leaf-shaped tube with a faster suction than usual, but it didn’t feel intrusive for me.
I also met with Dr. Piamonte, who screened me for oral cancer, checked my x-rays, and did a comprehensive exam. He was extremely knowledgeable and took the time to answer questions I had about my retainers so I wouldn’t have any complications down the line.
All the best, all the time
With the fantastic care I received, I wasn’t surprised to hear Cailin tell me that when the offices were fully reopened, they received a flood of appointments. However, I soon realized people weren’t just getting their teeth checked. It was also because patients missed seeing the Central Park West Dentistry staff. For some patients, the folks at CPW were one of the first people they had seen since the lockdown! I never thought of visiting the dentist’s office as a place to “socialize” but the staff make every visit and patient matter. It was clear to me that the team has an extraordinary relationship with their patients.