Special Needs & Oral Health

Parents walking through green hills carrying two children.

Many kids feel anxious at the dentist, but for kids with special needs, there are other concerns. For example, a sensitivity to bright light makes the dental office very stressful. Here’s what to know about special needs and oral health:

Children With Special Needs Are at a Higher Risk for Oral Health Issues

All kids are vulnerable to problems like cavities, but kids with special needs often struggle more. Some genetic conditions can cause tooth enamel issues and tooth misalignment. Certain medications and restricted diets can also increase the risk of cavities and gum disease. Physical limitations like sensitive gag reflexes and motor control disabilities make brushing and flossing twice a day challenging, too.

Know the Signs of Oral Health Problems

Children with special needs may not be able to explain when they feel tooth discomfort or pain. They might touch their mouth, cheeks, jaw, or teeth. They might also grind their teeth or refuse certain foods because chewing is painful. Discolored or bleeding gums are another clear sign that your child should see a dentist soon.

Talk to a Pediatric Dentist About Your Child’s Needs

Visiting the dentist can be stressful for kids with special needs and their families. Pediatric dentists want to make appointments as comfortable as possible. Sedation can help kids relax. At Sunshine Pediatric Dentistry, we offer three types of safe sedation dentistry – laughing gas, oral conscious sedation, and general anesthesia.

High-Quality Dental Care for Kids With Special Needs at Sunshine Pediatric Dentistry in San Antonio, TX

Our office can accommodate kids with special needs whether they have sensory or physical concerns. If sedation is an option, Dr. Ayala and the team always go through your child’s medical history and will only proceed if it’s safe. Have questions or want to schedule an appointment? Please contact us today!

We are trained to provide expert care to our special needs patients!