Individuals with special needs are those who have physical, medical, intellectual, or physical disabilities. These disabilities include but are not limited to patients with Autism, Alzheimer’s disease, Down syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Parkinson’s, and are bedbound. These, and many other conditions or injuries, can make standard dental procedures more difficult to complete and require special care and consideration when receiving dental treatment.
Why “In Motion Dentists”?
For nearly a decade, In Motion Dentists has provided unique and inclusive services to individuals within the greater Los Angeles and Orange County area. Considering that a significant portion of our patient population is special needs, our doctors are aware of common challenges and are highly trained to provide quality care and treatment. Unfortunately, it is far too common that many individuals with special needs are dismissed from dental services due to behaviors or the complexity of their case. Additionally, many dental health professionals resort to sleep sedation because they are unfamiliar on how to work with a person that has a disability. Although our doctors are certified to use oral sedation, we find greater success using our acquired techniques and calming demeanor while performing dental treatment. Our goal is to build a trusting relationship with patients and make dental visits less intimidating.
With nearly 20 years of combined experience, our doctors have extensive first hand experience working with someone with special needs. A challenge that the special needs population faces is the lack of qualified dentists who have the advanced training, experience and passion to treat this population. Our doctors are California Board-Certified dentists and members of multiple dental organizations, including the Specialize Care Dentistry Association which focuses on providing advanced training to dentists that have a desire to work with the special needs population. All of our doctors worked extensively with this population in dental school and/or while in their residency programs.
Our doctors all have a passion and unique skill for treating this population. We are also always looking out for continuing education courses to further advance our training. Since founding In Motion Dentists in 2014, Dr. Banner has been strict with who he hires with his practice and focuses on hiring providers, hygienists, and assistants that can facilitate in providing comprehensive dental services to anyone who needs in-home dental services in the greater Los Angeles and Orange County.
Our doctors are active members of the Special Care Dentistry Association. This association is a national organization that serves as a resource to all oral health care professionals who are dedicated to serving patients with special needs. The healthcare industry is always improving, and this organization of health professionals constantly educates and updates their members.
In Motion Dentists works closely or is contracted with several group homes, facilities and organizations. Some of our larger organizations we work with include:
- San Gabriel/Pomona Regional Center
- Frank D. Lanterman Regional Center
- East Los Angeles Regional Center
- College Hospital of Cerritos
This population is underserved and underfunded, and we are proud to take care of the patients who come to us in need of dental care. For more information about our services including cost of services, call our office at (626) 594-0374.
Helpful Tools and Devices for Oral Health
If you know of anyone who has a special healthcare need and are actively looking for options to their daily oral care, here are some of the top adaptive products and devices we recommend:
Open Wide Mouth Prop: This product is good for caretakers to help hold the patient’s mouth open while brushing. They won’t have to risk getting bit by using their fingers. Also, this allows the person who is brushing to brush the tongue, sides of the teeth, and the biting surface of the teeth.
- Where to get: Amazon or from our office
Oral Swabs: Great for Los Angeles and Orange County patients who are unable to swish and spit with mouthwash. Simply dip the oral swab in the mouthwash and swab the inside of the mouth, teeth, tongue, and gums. Using the Open Wide Mouth Prop can help if the person doesn’t open on command.
- Where to get: Any location with a pharmacy or our office
Biotene Dry Mouth Rinse: Many elderly people, those who have gone through chemo/radiation treatment and those on a variety of medications can have dry mouth. Dry mouth can quickly lead to rampant cavities. It’s important to keep the mouth moist. Use this mouthwash 2-4 times per day to lubricate the inside of the mouth. Use Oral Swabs if the person is not able to swish and spit.
- Where to get: Target/Wal-Mart or any location with a pharmacy
Gripit Floss Holder: It can be difficult for a person with certain disabilities or who is elderly to wrap the floss around their fingers and floss. This device has a wide handle for better grip and better control.
- Where to get: Amazon or Any Target/Wal-Mart
WaterPikWater Flosser: A water flosser is used to get food and plaque out from between the teeth and to massage and clean the gums by shooting a stream of water. We like the cordless one for better portability for Los Angeles and Orange County patients and caregivers to use in the shower since it can get a little messy. Though a water flosser isn’t meant to replace traditional flossing, it can be a great substitute when flossing is not possible.
- Where to get: Amazon, Target/Wal-Mart, or our office
Enamalon Toothpaste: This toothpaste provides fluoride absorption into the teeth as well as Calcium and Phosphate minerals (which is what our teeth are made up of already) to help prevent cavities from forming or to re-mineralize areas where a cavity is beginning to form. This toothpaste also helps prevent tooth sensitivity and gingivitis when used twice a day.
- Where to get: Amazon or our office
Electric Toothbrush: The use of an electric toothbrush can vastly improve oral health. The ultrasonic vibrations clean teeth quickly. An electric toothbrush also has a wider handle for better grip for those who have trouble firmly gripping a traditional manual toothbrush. We like the Philips Sonicare Diamond Clean toothbrush and the Crest Oral B Pro Series toothbrush. The cost is a bit high ($100-$150) but can save money in the long run by preventing cavities better.
- Where to get: Target/Wal-Mart/Costco or our office
- Toothbrush Adaptors: Here are a few ideas to give someone better grip on a toothbrush so patients can keep brushing their teeth on their own. Our favorites are using a bicycle handle or a tennis ball around the toothbrush handle.