If you have a child or young adult you care for with special needs, going to the dentist may be a source of anxiety or fear for them as well as you. Dental cleanings and other services can feel invasive and can lead to sensory overload. It is important to find a dentist who has compassion, training, and experience working with special needs patients.
Dental Phobia and Other Special Needs
A health condition, whether physical, mental, emotional, or all of these combined is the reason a child fears the dentist. In some cases, a severe, debilitating fear of the dentist is in itself a condition requiring special needs. Other childhood conditions that may require special consideration include:
- Attention Deficit Disorder
- Autism and Spectrum Disorders
- Cerebral Palsy
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Down’s syndrome
- Epidermolysis Bullosa
- Retinitis pigmentosa
- Pediatric cancers (on chemotherapy, or in remission)
- Sensory Processing Disorder
If your child requires specialized equipment, we will provide it. For example, a child with a severe physical disability may need to receive dental care in their own wheelchair rather than a dental chair, which could require some adjustments to the current equipment in place or even some additional equipment designed for special needs patients.
With today’s technology, patients can watch TV or digital media on an individual screen or listen to soothing music while getting their teeth cleaned or having procedures done. Audio and digital media can be a wonderful distraction from what is being done in the patient’s mouth. Our office also encourages parents to bring in any personal device that they feel will help and soothe their child during their visit.
Other advancements in the development of dental tools have made it easier and quicker to perform the most basic of procedures to the most complicated. Less time, less discomfort, and less anxiety for the patient are the main benefits.
Our pediatric dental office also has the ability to use Nitrous Oxide analgesia which is a safe form of a mild relaxant to help a patient deal with a stressful situation avoiding the necessity of stronger sedative measures.
Special needs dentistry involves customizing a care plan for each patient. Some patients are on certain medications that may affect their dental health, requiring specialized care, more frequent cleanings, and adaptations to the usual procedures. Patients with severe fear or emotional disorders may need certain accommodations to get through routine dental cleanings.
Teaching Home Dental Care
Patients with special needs may have more difficulty with home care of their teeth and may require extra help and specialized tools to brush and floss. Our team provides guidance and suggestions for making this easier at home. It may take time and patience to teach a special needs patient and their family how to properly care for their teeth but it is important and well worth it.
Cost of Dental Care for Special Needs Patients
You should never have to pay more for routine dental care simply because your child requires special accommodations or more time. If your dentist wants to charge you a higher rate to treat your child, find a dentist who won’t!
Dr. Jeffrey Ginsberg Specializes in Special Needs Dentistry
Dr. Ginsberg’s pediatric dentistry practice specializes in the care of patients with special needs with extensive experience. After completing two years of specialty training in Pediatric Dentistry which included training in hospital-based special needs dentistry, Dr. Ginsberg has put his education into his private practice. He has been practicing for over 35 years serving patients with a wide range of particular needs that exceed the basic level of care. Our office is equipped with accommodations, tools, and the compassion needed to care for patients in the least invasive way. Dr. Ginsberg’s team also received special needs training so that the entire team is prepared and experienced to provide the best, quality care for your child’s needs.
Call (914) 245-1670 today to schedule a consultation or request an appointment. We look forward to working with you and your child and helping to create the best possible experience with dental health care.