People With Special Needs Require Special Dentists
People with special needs like physical or cognitive disabilities often have problems getting their dental needs met. That's because not all dentists are equipped to handle children or adults who have those special needs. For example, a person who uses a wheelchair may have a hard time getting into a dental chair, especially if they have severe impairments. A person who has a spinal cord injury that caused quadriplegia may depend on their wheelchair to support their body as well as a mobility device. That can make it hard for a dentist to treat that person.
Pediatric Special Needs Dentists
There are several things that a dentist who works with kids with special needs can do to help their patients get the services they need with the least amount of stress as possible. Kids with autism or sensory disorders often have problems with loud noises, bright lights, and being touched. The kids may also have issues with communication and be unable to really tell the dentist what any problems are or when they are feeling overwhelmed.
One way that the dentist can handle this is to provide a room that has a more indirect lighting source so that it doesn't shine in the child's face. Providing noise blocking headphones can also help because it keeps out the loud noises that come from the dental tools. The noise can trigger meltdowns in kids with special needs and can scare them. Blocking it out will help to keep that from happening.
Making sure that parents are in the room, no matter how old the child is, can really help. That's because the parent knows their child best. The parent will be able to tell you if their child is starting to have difficulties.
Adult Special Needs Dentists
Just because children who have special needs have grown up doesn't mean that they have gotten rid of those special needs. That means that the dentist is going to have to still be sensitive to those needs.
One way to be sensitive to those needs is to provide an exam room that is very wheelchair friendly. That may mean that there is a space for the dentist to examine the patient while they are still in their wheelchair. A wheelchair for a person who is a quadriplegic may already be in a chair that reclines, which can let the dentist do the work without the patient needing to transfer to an exam chair. That person may also need to have a respirator to help them breathe, which can complicate dental treatment.
People with special needs need to be able to see a dentist who understands their needs and who is able to be flexible enough to meet those needs, whatever they are.
For more information, contact a business such as A Q Denture Services.