Dental Sedation for Special Needs Patients

Dental Sedation for Special Needs Patients

If you or your loved one is a special needs patient, then you know how many health conditions you must regularly safeguard against. With everything else you have to think about, your dental care may be the least of your concerns.

However, unlike many of the health conditions faced by patients with special needs, dental disease is preventable. It’s essential to do everything you can for your family members to access proper dental health care — before it’s too late.

Special Needs Patients Need Specialized Dental Care

Traditional treatment plans for oral and dental care may or may not apply to individuals with special needs. Sometimes, those with special needs have physical limitations due to trauma, hereditary issues or medical complications. If these complications affect their sensory development, they need help to medically manage their health.

Our dental health professionals have prepared for any type of special needs patients and are well aware of the differences they face during treatments. They take great care to provide specialized treatments and services, including sedation, for the patients.

When sedated, the patient is completely relaxed and does not feel any discomfort, making it easier to perform dental and oral care.

Starting preventive dentistry early is particularly important for special needs patients. One of the most common risk factors in patients with special needs is not the oral disease itself but with the individual’s ability to perform adequate self-care and oral hygiene. This brings about a greater risk of caries and gum disease.

This is why preventative dentistry is the best thing you can do for oral health. When not taken care of, the teeth and gums can become infected and lead to other, more serious health problems.

How to Help a Special Needs Patient With Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is also something that special needs patients may encounter. It happens due to an excess build-up of bacteria in the mouth and appears as a colorless or white plaque covering the gaps of the gums and teeth. The first symptoms may be bleeding when brushing teeth as there is often no pain at the onset of periodontal disease.

This is a more serious health condition than many people are aware of. If the special needs patient does not get the necessary treatment to remove the bacteria build-up, inflammation of the gums and infection may occur. If left even longer, the bone structure may begin to deteriorate.

Gum disease affects more than just the mouth and oral health. The beginning symptoms are not very serious and are most noticeable by signs of bad breath or bleeding. But over time, the condition may get worse if left untreated. Tooth loss, gum recession or other more serious illnesses may occur. Some folks have suffered from lung infections and even heart disease as a result of gum disease.

The good news is that periodontal disease is preventable. Brushing teeth, flossing, swishing the mouth and avoiding toxins are all things that you can help someone with special needs to do daily.

Next, make sure they have a good dentist and are getting adequate oral care. If they need to be sedated during a dental visit, that’s ok. It will make them less anxious and more relaxed, and the dentist can the job efficiently.

Benefits of Sedation for Special Needs Patients

If the person is already fearful of doctors, it’s a normal reaction to want to run from the dentist too. Special needs patients often have many doctor visits and medical checkups during their lifetime, and this can cause fear and stress.

It’s not always easy to reason with a special needs patient, as they may not process psychological information the same way that other patients do. Therefore, the option to sedate is a practical and easy way to get the oral care that they desperately need.

Instead of taking hours to complete one dental visit, preventative check-ups can be over in a matter of minutes. Why make something simple and straightforward more complex?

Is Sedation for Special Needs Patients Safe?

While we all know that anesthesia comes with some risks, it can be said that, in the hands of a very experienced dentist, the patient will be completely safe. That’s why you can trust the dentists in our practice. They will never perform a job without adequate review of a patient’s medical history or without the necessary oxygen and drugs needed to reverse a sedation.

Still, it’s always good to speak with your dentist and convey any fears or concerns you may have. This way, your dentist can answer your specific questions, and you can get a personal consultation and medical attention.

Dental Care for Kids With Special Needs

We also take our youngest patients’ care very seriously, while making the process fun for them. If your child has special needs, we understand and are here to help. They will be in good hands, and you can guarantee that their dental care will be professional.

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