All children need dental care, even extraordinary and exceptional children for whom visiting the dentist may be a challenge. Children have fears, may have difficulty being still, and sometimes require a strict adherence to a specific routine to feel at ease.
With the right dental practice, an appointment can go smoothly for a child who might otherwise struggle. There are some key characteristics to look for when choosing a special needs dentist that can make all the difference.
One of the most important qualities in a special needs dentist is experience. When a dentist and the supporting staff have worked with many children with varying needs they will be prepared because they know what to expect. If the child can sense that the dentist or hygienist is uneasy or nervous it may cause them to feel the same way. They need to see and feel confidence as well as a genuine smiling face to help them feel at ease.
It is important for the dentist and support staff to complete training in the field of special needs dentistry. Children’s needs may vary from emotional to physical, and it’s necessary to learn what is required in order to provide adequate dental services in a safe environment for everyone involved. Training will typically involve how to speak to children with special needs as well as how to meet their dental needs when physical disabilities are present.
If a child has physical disabilities, they may require special accommodations and equipment. Not every dental office will be equipped to handle special needs, so it’s important to find one that is. Specialized chairs, tools, and other items may be necessary to provide care for some children. Some patients may need to receive dental care in their own wheelchair rather than a dentist’s chair, so there must be a space that is conducive to that.
The use of technology has allowed dentists to make leaps and bounds in the field of special needs dentistry. Many accommodations have been created to make procedures easier from routine cleanings to root canals. Look for a dental office with cutting edge technology as they will be more likely to have the latest tools and equipment to make your child’s visit as comfortable as possible.
Most of all, a special needs dentist and their support staff should have compassion. Children need a gentle touch, a caring face, and a loving tone, especially those who are already facing so many challenges in their everyday lives. The experiences a child has with the dentist in their early years will stick with them for the rest of their lives. If their first experience is a positive one, their dental care going forward will be much easier for everyone involved.
Tender Smiles 4 Kids Specializes in Special Needs Dentistry
If you’re looking for a special needs dentist in New Jersey, Tender Smiles 4 Kids provides compassionate dental care for children with a wide range of concerns such as Autism, ADD, ADHD, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, and other conditions. We welcome all children and are glad to provide orientation tours to help patients feel more comfortable before their first dental appointment. Please make us aware of any and all special accommodations your child will need to receive care and we will do our best to comply.
Contact us at one of our 4 convenient offices to schedule a consultation:
- Freehold: 732-625-8080
- North Brunswick: 732-249-1010
- Edison: 732-549-3773
- Roselle: 908-245-5556