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Should I Try to Get My Down Syndrome Son Braces?

I have a son with Down Syndrome. Things are more scary for him than other children. We’ve tried a dentist a few times. None of them have gone well unless we used some type of sedation. His teeth are out of alignment. When I asked my dentist about getting him braces, he said there really wasn’t a point. I’m not sure what he meant by that and I’m trying not to think about the most offensive possibilities. However, I know what it is like to have a bite that is off. When I was a teenager, I had jaw aches and head aches until my teeth were fixed. I don’t want my son to go through the same thing. Is there some type of process for treating a child with Down Syndrome who needs braces?


Dear Cathey,


Asian teenage boy cooking, for information on orthdontics for Down's Syndrome, autism, and special needs.


I’m not sure what your dentist meant by there is no point. In fact, a healthy bite is very important. When you have a child that has Down Syndrome, the biggest issue would be sensitivity to his specific needs. Because of that, it is important that you see a dentist and orthodontist who are familiar with special needs care. For instance, some special needs children struggle with certain textures. While some can tolerate traditional braces, others may need a more creative solution or a different type of treatment altogether. There are many options for braces these days.

Special needs dentists will have some useful advice on how to make the transition of using a dentist or orthodontist less scary for your son. I would check out some of the advice that Dr. Tostado gives to patients in a situation like yours. There are some simple things that can be done ahead of time to make for a smoother transition.

This blog is brought to you by Bee Cave Orthodontist Dr. Alberto Tostado.