4 Ways a Children’s Dental Office Can Accommodate Children With Special Needs

4 Ways a Children’s Dental Office Can Accommodate Children With Special Needs
Posted on 07/01/2023

July-Blog-resIf you have a child with special needs, then you know the extra time and care you need to put into a wide range of routine things like healthcare appointments. Dental health is extremely important for any child, especially as they lose teeth and their mouths grow and change.

When you seek dental care for a child, you will want to find an office who accommodate for their special needs. A children's dental office may specialize in special needs patients. Learn some of the ways they can accommodate your child and help make the experience comfortable for everyone.

1. Office Preparation

A child with special needs may have sensory issues. Those issues could come into full effect inside a bright and loud dental office. Before your appointment, you could contact your child’s dental office to prepare the room to fit your child's needs. Office preparation can include a number of different factors.

For example, you may seek dim lighting in the office so the entry doesn't feel too bright and overstimulating. You may request the playing of calm and relaxing music to help set the mood. In some cases, the waiting room could cause stress and anxiety in a child. You could chose to remain in a vehicle and then receive a call when the exam room is ready.

From there, you could go straight through the waiting room, or the office may offer an alternative entry point.

2. Advanced Dental Training

When you visit a dental office that specializes in children with special needs, then you can feel confident with the care and treatment you will receive. Along with their standard dental training, the workers in this type of dental office will go through extra classes and training on how to treat and prepare for children with special needs.

The workers will have training on how to react in certain situations, how to care for a patient, and how to prepare a safe environment. Their communication skills will help you feel at ease and allow you to express any questions or concerns without any push back.

Dentists and hygienists will often go through annual training sessions to refresh themselves on specific topics or to learn about new approaches to dental care to those with special needs. The training covers all different conditions and will help make the appointment go smoother for everyone involved.

3. Dental Treatment Under Anesthesia

In some cases, a child with special needs cannot sit through any form of special care. They may not sit still, have fears, or need more advanced treatments like fillings. To help accommodate those children, you have the option to allow your child to go through dental treatment while under anesthesia.

While under anesthesia, a dentist can perform the procedures without any delays or issues. In some cases, a child will need to go to a children's hospital for the treatment. In other cases, a child could receive anesthesia right in the dental office. If this is an option you seek, then you need to plan ahead of time to ensure everything is in place to move forward with the process.

Along with cleanings and fillings, a dentist could complete other tasks like x-rays while a child goes through anesthesia as well. X-rays could play a vital role in figuring out any dental issues or seeing changes within the mouth.

4. Special Tools & Supplies

In some cases, little items can make a big difference as a child with special needs goes through their dentist appointment. For example, a dentist may provide a wide range of fidget toys for a child to use. The fidget toys can help reduce anxiety and allow a child to sit in a dental chair for longer without the need to move around.

A dentist may also offer a weighted blanket to drape over a child while they sit in a dental chair. A weighted blanket allows a child to relax and reduces anxiety. The weight placed all around their bodies can help induce calm and allow a dentist to complete a variety of tasks.

A dentist may also have special tools to help with the procedure. Instead of bright metal tools, tools catered to children can feature bright calming colors and designs that will not create anxiety in a child. If you have certain methods that work at home, then you could implement those same ideas in a dentist office.

An office may allow you to bring in certain items or they may have the items already. Contact them ahead of time to arrange all of the extras you seek so they are readily available for the time of the appointment.

Book your child's appointment with us at Dentistry For Children & Adolescents. We have trained professionals in the areas of special needs and will help you get through the appointment with the least amount of stress.


Dentistry for Children & Adolescents

  • Edina Office - 7373 France Ave. S., Suite 402, Edina, MN 55435 Phone: 952-831-4400
  • Burnsville Office - 14050 Nicollet Ave., Suite 100, Burnsville, MN 55337 Phone: 952-435-4102
  • Eden Prairie Office - 6385 Old Shady Oak Road, Suite 150, Eden Prairie , MN 55344 Phone: 952-932-0920

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