Special Needs Dentistry
At Michael J. Leach D.D.S. Pediatric Dentistry, we value the unique qualities of each young smile we treat, regardless of developmental disability or other healthcare issues.
Dr. Leach and his team are trained to provide the best care for patients with specialized needs. Every special needs patient has one-on-one time with Dr. Leach who performs all cleanings and operative work. During these appointments, Dr. Leach will take extra time to talk with the parent and patient about any health changes since the last visit and adjust his treatment plan accordingly. Additionally, he will teach parents the best technique for cleaning their child’s teeth and maintaining good oral health.
Creating personal relationships based on trust is at the forefront of every patient appointment. Dr. Leach allows the patient to get comfortable at their own pace and never rushes them into starting the appointment. Our team has several approaches that they use when one of our special needs patients comes in including, Show and Tell. During Show and Tell, Dr. Leach or his assistant, Amanda, will talk through each of the instruments that will be used using child friendly keywords that provide a sense of peace instead of fear. Also, during the time, the patients are allowed to touch the instruments to become more acquainted with them.
Dr. Leach takes a very conservative approach with treatment and does not use sedation. We know that meltdowns are bound to happen, and anxieties will spike which is why we set aside extra time to allow each patient to become familiar with their surroundings and regulate their emotions. To assist in helping our special needs patients get comfortable, one of our therapy dogs Honey or Maisy will be in the room during the appointment and, if requested, will lay with the patient and assist in lowering their anxiety levels.
Our office is wheelchair friendly and Dr. Leach will complete the appointment without ever having to transfer the patient from their chair. We strive to make the appointment as convenient for the patient and parent as possible.