Helping Children with Autism Get the Best Dental Care

For a child with autism, sedation dentistry may be the only way he or she can have their needed dental treatments.

Oral care for children with autism is not much different from that of other children. However, children with autism often have a difficult time communicating, which can make cooperation when visiting the dentist challenging.

As a parent of a child with autism, you understand that a visit to the dentist can be complicated. The thought of taking your child to the dentist may even make you nervous, and this is something we understand. At The Dental Anesthesia Center, we specialize in working with patients with special needs thanks to our years of experience and cutting-edge sedation and sleep dentistry procedures.

Sedation Dentistry and Autism

Dental sedation involves the use of medications to create a state of relaxation. There are three levels of sedation – minimal, moderate, and deep. The level that is right for a patient is determined based on their medical history, current physical condition, and mental health.

For a child with autism, sedation dentistry may be the only way he or she can have their needed dental treatments. In fact, sedation has become an accepted standard of care. According to the AAPD (American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry), conscious sedation is recommended for:

  • Patients in need of dental care who are unable to cooperate due to lack of emotional or psychological maturity
  • Preschool children who are unable to understand or cooperate for treatment
  • Patients that cannot receive dental treatment due to a physical, cognitive, or medical disability
  • Patients who require dental care but have extreme anxiety or phobia and cannot cooperate for treatment

The AAPD recommends deep sedation or general anesthesia for:

  • Patients with specific mental, physical, or medically compromising conditions
  • Patients who need dental restorative or surgical treatments for whom conscious sedation is ineffective
  • For patients who are extremely fearful, uncooperative, anxious, or physically resistant who need substantial dental treatment and no expectation that the behavior will improve soon
  • Patients who have sustained extensive dental or orofacial trauma
  • Patients who would otherwise not be able to receive comprehensive dental care

Sedation dentistry provides a safe and effective way for patients with special needs to receive the dental treatment they need. Patients can have a complete exam, full mouth series of x-rays, and thorough cleaning while under sedation or general anesthesia.

Sedation Dentistry in St. Louis

At The Dental Anesthesia Center, we have the only two general dentists certified in Deep Sedation and General Anesthesiology in the state of Missouri. We work hard to make our patients feel at ease by providing them with exceptional patient care in a relaxed and convenient atmosphere. We are a state-of-the-art dental facility for patients who require general anesthesia for their dental care.

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The only board-certified dental anesthesiologist in Missouri, including St. Louis.

Updated: May 31, 2024

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