If your baby has their first tooth or has celebrated their first birthday, it is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry that they should see a pediatric dentist. Unfortunately, a first appointment can be intimidating for some kids and will often become even more so if your little one has special needs. Although it may seem as if the family dentist can meet all of their needs, there are unique benefits that many kids with special needs and their parents find only in a pediatric dental office.
Why Does Your Child Need A Pediatric Dentist?
It is important to note that a pediatric dentist received at least an extra two years after college, dental school and a residency, in order to acquire the necessary skills that treating children requires. As a part of that, they will will learn that children with Down syndrome often experience a delay of up to 24 months when their teeth are developing.
Children with severe digestive conditions, tactile disorders, high-functioning autism or immune system problems are often more prone to poor oral hygiene, which increases the likelihood of chronic cavities or infections. Providing children with the dental care they need, without exacerbating the original or underlying problem is best done by an experienced pediatric dentist.
In addition, children with cerebral palsy are more susceptible to an uneven fit of their top and bottom jaws, contributing to severe over- or underbite. It is thought that the muscular problems associated with cerebral palsy are a primary cause. However, that common problem, known as malocclusion is also seen in children with other developmental delays, including cognitive disorders, autism, vision and hearing problems, etc.
Therefore, it is typically recommended throughout childhood that children with special needs begin receiving appropriate dental care from a pediatric dentist no later than their first birthday or as soon as possible after that time if the special needs diagnosis was not made until after that time.
What Type Of Modifications Can Be Made If Oral Surgery Is Required?
Due to the propensity of misaligned teeth or jaws and tactile issues that many kids with special needs experience, they are frequently at an increased risk of severe dental decay that ultimately require surgical intervention. Unfortunately, that can be very traumatic for them and it can be even more so if it is then necessary to refer your child to a pediatric oral surgeon or another professional that your son or daughter is unfamiliar with.
Therefore, it will be helpful to verify that the dentist you ultimately choose has the ability to provide at least some surgical interventions in the office. Lacking that, it may also be helpful for the pediatric dentist to have privileges at a dental facility. That option would still provide an unfamiliar environment, but their knowledge of the dentist might prevent a more severe reaction from your child.
In conclusion, children with special needs often need a pediatrician who can work with their unique challenges. By extension, unless advised otherwise by a qualified dental professional (such as one from Apollo Dental Center), they are likely to benefit from the services of a pediatric dentist until adulthood.
I was very unhappy with the way that my front teeth looked. They were crooked and stained with an ugly yellow tint. I asked my dentist if there was anything that could be done to improve them. After discussing the options with my dentist, I decided to have crowns put on my front teeth. The procedure was painless and I wish that I had done it sooner. My name is Constance Graham and I am writing this blog to inform others about cosmetic dentistry. If you don’t like the way your teeth look, speak to your dentist about improving your smile. There are various cosmetic procedures that you can have done such as veneers, crowns, teeth whitening, and dental implants. I hope you use the information in this blog to learn more about cosmetic dentistry and how it can help you.