Maintain proper dental care can be challenging task for many parents, but for parents with special needs children, such task can be an uphill battle and sometimes, risky.
Maintaining Daily Oral Hygiene
Most children with special needs cannot perform their daily dental care independently. Parents or caregivers must always be there to assist them. It’s not an easy task to clean another person’s teeth, particularly if they resist it. Sometimes, more than one person may be needed to help with their daily toothbrushing.
Kids with restricted motor skills and coordination may find tooth brushing easier with the use of a powered toothbrush. Unlike the manual brush, the head of an electric toothbrush works quicker and can clean better.
There are some types of toothbrush that can make cleaning more efficient. For kids with high risk of aspiration, using a suction toothbrush connected to a home suction apparatus is a better option to get rid of saliva during tooth brushing.
An ideal toothbrush for kids with special needs is the Collis Curve toothbrush. It has curved design bristle that can clean all the sides of the teeth while preventing the risk of poking the bristle on the gums.
Some special kids may resist oral cleaning by biting the toothbrush. To protect the parent and the child, a mouth prop can be used. Also called open wide disposable mouth rests, this wedge-shaped device is placed on the front part of the mouth so the child can rest their jaw muscles.
If you can’t find a mouth prop, you can use five wooden tongue depressors and join them together using adhesive tape.
Visit the Dentist Regularly
It is necessary that kids with special needs visit their pediatric dentist on a regular basis. When it comes to oral health and dental care, the rule applies to all children and kids with special needs are not exempted. This ensure that daily dental care techniques can be reinforced or taught and minor issues can be detected before they turn serious.
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