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Behavior Management

It is our intent that your child receives the best possible dental care in a positive and safe environment. Providing high quality dental care to children can sometimes be difficult due to their behavior. Every effort will be made to obtain your child's cooperation through warmth, charm, humor and understanding. When these fail, there are several behavioral management techniques used to eliminate or minimize disruptive behavior. These are routinely used and accepted by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and are described below.

Treatment area: One large open room accommodates up to three children at one time. This allows the children to be with each other, which helps to create a more secure and comfortable environment.

Tell-show-do: The dentist or assistant explains to the child what is to be done by demonstrating on the child's finger. Then the procedure is done on the patient's tooth. Praise is used to reinforce cooperative behavior.

Voice control: The attention of a disruptive child is gained by changing the tone or increasing the volume of the practitioner's voice.

Mouth props: A rubber device is occasionally placed in the child's mouth to prevent either intentional or unintentional closure on the dentist's fingers or drill.

Physical restraint by dentist/assistant: The child is held so they can not grab a moving drill or other sharp object. They are not able to grab the practitioner's hand while delicate work is being performed. This is for the safety of the child and to facilitate treatment.

Nitrous oxide analgesia: (Laughing gas) is administered to calm and soothe the patient prior to certain procedures. Nitrous oxide is a very safe medication that very rarely causes nausea. The patient never loses consciousness.

Quiet room: This is a glass enclosed room, directly adjacent to the open area room, where treatment can be performed on a child who is crying or displaying other noncooperative behavior. The child can still see the other children in the office, but cannot be heard by the other children. This room is used to protect cooperative children from becoming upset or frightened by a crying, uncooperative child.