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patient education/ common oral problems/ Behaviour Management
Children form the most challenging set of patients in almost any Dentist's Clinic. Various methods are used to reduce fear and anxiety and get them to co operate for Dental treatment.Behaviour Management is a technique by which the dental health team can effectively and efficiently perform a dental treatment on a child and at the same time inculcate a positive dental attitude in the child.
Communication: Establishing a relationship to develop trust and comfort.
Tell-Show-Do: Give verbal explanations of procedures at an appropriate developmental level of the patient (tell); demonstrations for the patient of the visual, auditory, olfactory, and tactile aspects of the procedure in a carefully defined, non-threatening setting (show); and then, completion of the procedure (do).
Positive Reinforcement: Positive reinforcement is an effective technique to reward desired behaviors and, thus, strengthen the recurrence of those behaviors. This involves giving praise for positive behavior and also rewarding with toys/prizes and balloons after the appointment to reinforce appropriate behavior and to help the children enjoy their visits and become confident in their ability to cooperate.
Distraction and Imagery: Children have a short attention span and Dentists (or staff) will often divert the patients attention to something that is pleasant and fun to talk about to get their mind off of dentistry for a short period.
Non-Verbal Communication: Reinforcement and guidance of behavior through appropriate contact, posture, facial expression, and body language.
Nitrous Oxide: Nitrous oxide/oxygen inhalation (laughing gas/Happy Air) is a safe and effective technique to reduce anxiety and enhance effective communication. It dulls the senses and enhances numbness (analgesia), reduces the gag reflex and has a degree of amnesia (shortens perception of time for procedures). Nitrous Oxide has an onset of action that is rapid, the effects are easily titrated and reversible, and recovery is rapid and complete.
Conscious Sedation: If, for whatever reasons, traditional techniques of behavior modification are unsuccessful, conscious sedation is an option - specially for longer procedures. Ask your Dentist for details.
General Anesthesia: General anesthesia is a controlled state of unconsciousness that eliminates awareness, movement and discomfort during dental treatment. General anesthesia may be indicated for children with extensive dental needs who are extremely uncooperative, fearful or anxious or for the very young who do not understand how to cope in a cooperative fashion. General anesthesia also can be helpful for children requiring significant surgical procedures or patients having special health care needs. Although there is some risk associated with general anesthesia, it can be used safely and effectively when administered by an appropriately-trained individual in an appropriately-equipped facility. Precautions are taken to protect your child during general anesthesia; personnel who are trained to manage complications will monitor your child closely. Your Dentist can discuss the benefits and risks of general anesthesia and why it is recommended for your child.
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