24 Jul Dental Care for Patients with Special Needs
More than 61% of U.S. adults experience some form of dental anxiety. For those with physical, emotional, or mental disabilities, a visit to the dentist may present even more unique challenges that make caregivers wonder if it’s worth it. At Imperial Dental Center, our mission is to create a stress-free environment and provide proper dental care to all, regardless of their circumstances. Here are some of the steps we take to extend additional care to those with special needs.
COMMUNICATION AND SENSORY CONSIDERATIONS
Effective communication is crucial for all patients, and even more critical for patients with disabilities or cognitive impairments. We use clear and simple language to explain procedures and ensure our patients fully understand their visit. Our team practices patience and allows ample time for questions, providing reassurance throughout the process.
For patients with sensory sensitivities, we create a calm and quiet environment by minimizing noise and bright lights. We also offer amenities like earplugs, sunglasses, warm towels, and blankets to reduce sensory overload and promote a more comfortable dental experience.
ACCOMMODATING PHYSICAL DISABILITIES
We’ve taken special care to ensure that our dental office is fully accessible to patients with physical disabilities. Our facilities are wheelchair accessible, with wider doorways, bathrooms, and treatment areas designed to accommodate wheelchairs. We are trained in assisting patients transfer from their wheelchairs to the dental chair.
To provide additional support during treatment, we use supportive cushions, headrests, and positioning aids. These measures help prevent fatigue and ensure a more comfortable experience.
BUILDING TRUST AND ESTABLISHING ROUTINES
We believe that building trust and establishing routines are essential for successful dental visits for patients with cognitive impairments. To achieve this, we take the following steps:
Pre-Appointment Meeting: We welcome patients to schedule pre-appointment visits to familiarize themselves with our dental office, equipment, and our friendly staff, including the hygienist and dentist who will be taking care of them. We have take-home brochures and visual aids that can walk patients through the dental process.
Consistent Routines: Repetition and routines can help patients with cognitive impairments feel more at ease. We encourage regular appointment times with the same dental hygienist, so they become comfortable when visiting our offices. Our hygienists provide step-by-step explanations to enhance comfort and understanding during the visit.
Network with Caregivers: Caregivers play a vital role in assisting patients with disabilities during dental visits. We encourage their involvement, and seek to learn from them any behavioral triggers, special medial needs, and effective communication techniques. This collaborative approach ensures a comprehensive and supportive experience for the patient.
Home Care Education: We support caregivers by helping them design tailored oral hygiene techniques for the patient’s needs. By providing written instructions, demonstrations, and suggesting adaptive tools, caregivers can maintain good oral health for their loved ones at home.
A COMFORTABLE EXPERIENCE
At Imperial Dental Center, our compassionate and individualized approach ensures that all our patients, regardless of their unique circumstances, receive the oral care they deserve. We are committed to providing special sensory accommodations and physical accessibility, creating a comfortable experience for everyone who visits us.
If you have questions about dental care for loved ones with disabilities, contact us at (281) 265-3567 or schedule an online appointment. Together, we can ensure that your dental visit is stress-free, comfortable, and leads to a healthy and fulfilling life.
Dr. Dragana Angelova
Imperial Dental Center
“We love to see you smile”