July 16, 2012

Taking your child with an autism spectrum disorder to the dentist

Taking your son/daughter on the autism spectrum to the dentist poses many challenges. This article hopes to make you aware of some of these challenges prior to your first visit, as well as provide some useful ways to deal with them. Included in this article are three main areas that are most often in need of attention: preparation, sensory issues and communication.

When seeking a dentist, call the office and discuss your son/daughter’s needs. The more you know ahead of time about their practices and why they do them, the more comfortable you will be. Ask if they have experience with children who have an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and if they have special procedures in order to optimize each visit. Ask about those procedures. Some procedures you might ask about are: accompanying your son/daughter in the room while doing the exam; having an appointment at a time of day when your son/daughter is at his/her best; having a short wait time; and having the same staff at each visit for consistency. If you’re not comfortable with the answers to your questions, consider another dentist. Some dentists may refuse to treat your son/daughter because they’re unsure how to make them comfortable... READ MORE >>

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