As a parent of a special needs child, you are never quite sure how your child is going to respond to new situations. You are definitely never sure how your child will respond to doctors and dentists. Whether you already know how complicated a dentist visit can be or you are about to take your special needs child to a dentist for the first time, here is why taking him or her to a clinic that caters to his or her unique needs is such a big deal.
The Staff Has Received Special Training to Help These Kids
It can be tiring sometimes when you have to explain to so many people about your child with autism, your child with Down's, your child with cerebral palsy, etc. You just want to take your child to a clinic and know that the staff "get it" because they have had lots of extra training on how to handle all kinds of situations with special needs kids. That is exactly what you do get when you find a clinic that has specially-trained staff and dentists.
The Clinics Are Set Up to Be Low-Key
Kids on the spectrum and some kids with Down's Syndrome are often overwhelmed by sights and sounds. These particular clinics know that, and they tailor the environments to be low-key. Lights are low, things are kept quiet, and colors and décor are toned down to help these kids feel comfortable and reduce their anxiety. Music is not pumped in and played non-stop in the background, and exam rooms are enclosed to reduce the sounds your child might hear coming from other treatment rooms.
Sedation Dentistry Is Available (Most of the Time)
If your child is going to be especially anxious and/or overwhelmed just by being in a new place, you can ask the dentist in these clinics about sedation dentistry. Most dentists are able to provide IV and liquid medication doses for the purpose of sedating your child and helping him or her feel calmer during the appointment or sleep through a restoration procedure, such as a filling for a cavity. Ask your dentist who provides special needs dental care what his or her sedation procedures are and whether or not he or she is willing to sedate your child for more intensive procedures that might be a problem if your child does not sit still long enough (e.g. if they have frequent seizures or have cerebral palsy).