Proper Dental Care for Children with Special Needs

Kids Dentist

Dentistry for Children with Special Needs

 

Whether your child suffers from severe anxiety or they have a diagnosed special need that makes receiving proper oral care difficult, finding a skilled pediatric dentist can be difficult. Children with special needs require special attention and different needs to be addressed but most importantly, additional training is required to provide comprehensive dental care for these patients. Fortunately, our pediatric dental specialist has advanced training beyond dental school that allows him to interact positively with children with special needs. This includes using behavior management solutions and sedation techniques that can help your child feel safe and relaxed. Our office is fully equipped to accommodate all special needs children, allowing us to administer care in an environment that’s comfortable for your child. Our staff members and pediatric dentist collaborate with parents to develop a personalized dental care plan that meets your child’s unique and special needs.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recognizes that providing comprehensive preventive and therapeutic oral health care to individuals with special health care needs (SHCN) is an important part of the specialty of pediatric dentistry. Pediatric Dentists value the unique qualities of each person and the need to ensure maximal health attainment for all, regardless of developmental disability or other special health care needs a patient may have. A guide has been established by the AAPD that is intended to educate health care providers, parents, and ancillary organizations about the management of oral health care need particular to individuals with special needs.

According to the US Census Bureau, approximately 36.3 million Americans have a disability, with about two-thirds of these individuals having a severe disability. The proportion of children in the US with special needs is estimated to be 18 percent, approximately 12.5 million.  As pediatric dentists, we received special training (2 – 3 years) beyond dental education with individuals with SHCN and understand that patients and families can face many barriers to obtaining proper oral health care. We work with parents to ensure that every child receives the attention they deserve both medically and socially to be able to properly address their needs.

Transitioning to a pediatric dentist who is knowledgeable and comfortable with adult oral health care needs often is difficult due to a lack of trained providers willing to accept the responsibility of caring for special needs patients. At Hello Kids Dentistry, we ensure that our team is well-trained and prepared to serve patients with special health care needs and their families. We look forward to meeting you and look forward to presenting the best dental experience for you and your child.

Call our practice with any questions you may have or to schedule an appointment today!

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References:

  • Woldorf JW. Transitioning adolescents with special health care needs: Potential barriers and ethical conflicts. J Spec Pediatr Nurs 2007;12(1):53-5.
  • Casamassimo PS, Seale NS, Ruehs K. General dentists’ perceptions of educational and treatment issues affecting access to care for children with special health care needs. J Dent Educ 2004;68(1):23-8.
  • American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation. Clinical Sciences Standard 2-26 in Accreditation Standards for Dental Education Programs. Chicago, Ill. Educational program, clinical science 2-26. Available at: “https://www.ada.org/sections/educationAndCareers/ pdfs/current_predoc.pdf”. Accessed August 2, 2012.
  • Anders PL, Davis EL. Oral health of patients with intellectual disabilities: A systematic review. Spec Care Dentist 2010;30(3):110-7.
  • Lewis CW. Dental care and children with special health care needs: A population-based perspective. Acad Pediatr 2009;9(6):420-6.
  • Thikkurissy S, Lal S. Oral health burden in children with systemic disease. Dent Clin North Am 2009;53(2): 351-7, xi.