Special Needs Dentist for Kids Long Beach, CA
Children with developmental disabilities may require more dental care and attention than others. For these children, special needs dentistry may be a good option. A pediatric dentist can attend to your child in the ways they deserve.
A special needs dentist for kids is available at Paramount Dental Care & Specialty in Long Beach and the surrounding area. Make sure your child is seen by someone who can accommodate all their unique needs. Call us today at (562) 450-1261 to schedule an appointment or learn more about our services.
Understanding Special Needs Dentist for Kids
Part of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD)’s ideology lies in the belief that all patients with special health care needs deserve access to "comprehensive preventive and therapeutic oral health care” that boosts their overall health and well-being. As such, pediatric dentists are uniquely qualified and trained to take care of children with special needs.
In addition to completing four years of dental school, pediatric dentists must successfully undergo two additional years of residency training in dentistry for children of all ages — including those with special needs. This training involves addressing issues such as dental anxiety and related issues.
“…pediatric dentists are uniquely qualified and trained to take care of children with special needs.”
Choosing a Special Needs Dentist for Kids
It is important for parents and caregivers to know what to look for when choosing a special needs dentist for kids. The ideal dentist is backed up by a caring staff that takes the time to listen closely to each concern before creating a customized plan for the patient. Parents and caregivers of especially anxious children may also want to consider looking for a dentist who offers sedation.
It is also essential for parents and caregivers to choose a special needs dentist that their child is comfortable with. A pleasant bedside manner and office atmosphere is crucial for children with special needs. Parents and caregivers should also feel comfortable speaking up and asking any questions they may have at any point during the treatment process.
“A pleasant bedside manner and office atmosphere is crucial for children with special needs.”
Why Take Your Child to a Special Needs Dentist
Children with special needs may have a hard time keeping up with their oral health. As a matter of fact, according to the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center, dental care is one of the top unmet healthcare needs among children with special needs. Remembering all the oral hygiene rules can be difficult, and poor motor functions can make it challenging to carry out basic tasks.
A special needs dentist for kids can help guide patients, parents, and caregivers in a relevant, sensitive manner. They understand that a slower, gentler approach is necessary. As such, they take the time to allow patients to adjust to the new setting and address any questions and concerns a parent or caregiver may have. Plus, since all pediatricians are trained in providing quality care for special needs patients, patients never need to worry about "aging out” of the clientele.
“A special needs dentist for kids can help guide patients, parents, and caregivers in a relevant, sensitive manner.”
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Special Needs Dentist for Kids in Long Beach, CA
Preparing for Your Child to Go to a Special Needs Dentist
Most special needs dentists for kids allow familiarization appointments to allow patients to get comfortable in and accommodated to the office before their actual appointment. These visits can greatly enhance a patient’s first visit, as can positive talk about the appointment before it happens.
If possible, drive by the dentist’s office before the day of the familiarization appointment. Assuage any fears by letting the patient know that this is where they will be going soon. Tell them that the dentists and dental team will help them and present it as a fun, positive experience. On the day of the appointment, bring a favorite toy or blanket for comfort. Make it a special occasion.
“Tell them that the dentists and dental team will be there to help them and present it as a fun, positive experience.”
Questions Answered on This Page
Children With Autism and Special Needs Dentistry
According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), all children should see a pediatric dentist by the time their first tooth erupts or they reach the age of one — whichever comes first. As such, it is vital to establish a dental home early on. Research has shown that children with autism, in particular, do well if they can see the same dentist and staff members for every appointment.
Many children with autism have sensory issues and/or trouble communicating and thus require special accommodations. A special needs dentist for kids understands how to make children with autism feel as comfortable as possible. Our team understands how to use different techniques to reduce anxiety, explain procedures in layman’s terms, and help children feel safe.
“Our team understands how to use different techniques to reduce anxiety, explain procedures in layman’s terms, and help children feel safe.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Do children with special needs also have specific dental needs?
A. Yes, children with special needs often have specific dental needs. For instance, they may be more prone to tooth decay due to dental trauma, problems, brushing their teeth, or certain medications. Regular visits with a special needs dentist can help patients and their parents or caregivers stay on top of any issues.
Q. How can children with special needs benefit from preventative dentistry?
A. All children can benefit from preventative dentistry — especially regular brushing and flossing combined with a well-balanced diet. Regular teeth cleanings can also help ward off gingivitis, and fluoride treatments or an antibacterial toothpaste can help prevent any other dental issues from developing. Additionally, dental sealants can ward off tooth decay.
Q. What will happen during my child’s first visit to the special needs dentist?
A. A child’s first visit to the dentist is generally short and sweet. It is typically focused on helping the child acclimate to the new environment and become friendly with Paramount Dental Care & Specialty and staff. It also allows us an opportunity to provide you with some basic education on oral healthcare and address any questions and concerns you may have. This initial visit is key to establishing a good association between the dental office and your child.
Q. How often does my child need to see the special needs dentist?
A. The AAPD recommends that all children see the dentist twice every year (or once every six months). However, some children may need to be seen more frequently, depending on their unique needs. Paramount Dental Care & Specialty can give you a better understanding of what to expect during a one-on-one consultation.
Q. Should my child see a special needs dentist?
A. The AAPD refers to children with developmental issues as children with special needs. This specific population may have physical, mental, and/or behavioral aspects that require special accommodations. Otherwise, parents and caregivers risk stunting their overall health to the detriment of their teeth’s growth and alignment.
Definition of Pediatric Dental Terminology
Call Us Today
A special needs dentist can help your child feel comfortable in the dentist’s chair while optimizing their oral and overall health. We at Paramount Dental Care & Specialty can help. Call us today at 562-450-1261 to schedule an appointment or learn more about our services.
If you live in the Long Beach area, call 562-450-1261 for an appointment in our Long Beach office.
Helpful Related Links
- American Dental Association (ADA). Glossary of Dental Terms. 2021
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