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Special Needs Children: Pediatric Dentistry

Dental health care should be available to everyone. The peculiarity consists in the fact that people with special needs have to receive care under certain circumstances. For instance, surgery or other dental services can be problematic to deliver when dealing with people with physical disabilities (Gargiulo & Kilgo, 2014). From my own experience, I can tell that the majority of individuals with learning disabilities have to be reassured due to their exaggerated anxiousness. Moreover, there are numerous precautions that should be addressed in terms of specific medical problems. The fact is, dental services providers have to take into consideration the peculiarities of dealing with children with special needs. One of the most interesting things about dental services is that dental teams are specializing in treating children with learning disabilities.

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From my own experience, I can tell that taking kids to the dentist throughout their early age is pivotal. Parents can take into account the benefits of a low-sugar diet because there is a danger of issues that may transpire due to an incorrect brushing technique. Dental teams that have to deal with the children with special needs suggest moderating the intake of sugary foods and fizzy drinks. Also, the individuals with special needs can have problems with effective teeth cleaning in the case if they are having trouble moving their hands or arms. I can recommend using soft toothbrushes that can easily adapt to the mouth cavity. The kids that are exposed to mobility problems are advised to use electric toothbrushes. By means of implementing electric toothbrushes, the dental team may encourage children with special needs to overcome their learning difficulties and start brushing their teeth properly.

The problem with oral diseases consists in the fact that the majority of children with special needs are exposed to an increased risk of suffering from them (these illnesses include cognitive disorders, behavioral issues, and systemic diseases). The problem is also rather serious because almost 20% of the children living in the United States are a part of that population (Gargiulo & Kilgo, 2014). From what I can tell from my experience, the majority of issues with oral diseases in children with special needs transpire due to improper hygiene, recurrent medication intake, and unusual diets. Therefore, dental teams have to pay superior attention to children with special needs. The key concern, of course, is proper hygiene that can be facilitated by a number of different ways. First of all, the problem may consist in dexterity that will limit the children’s ability to brush their teeth (Koch, Poulsen, Espelid, & Haubek, 2017). From my experience, I can also tell that certain sensory problems may transpire that will make it difficult for the children to floss and brush their teeth. The next aspect of dealing with the provision of dental services to children with special needs is the increased amount of stress in these little individuals. They may become overanxious, and it is important to talk to them and tell the little patient what is going to be done next so as not to frighten them (Koch et al., 2017). Always, the workflow should be identical to what the dental services provider told the child. The core responsibility of dentists when they are dealing with children with special needs is to assist the kids and help them during each of the steps from choosing their toothbrush to using it properly.


Gargiulo, R. M., & Kilgo, J. L. (2014). An introduction to young children with special needs: Birth through age eight. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Koch, G., Poulsen, S., Espelid, I., & Haubek, D. (2017). Pediatric dentistry: A clinical approach. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons.

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