Special Needs Care

Special Needs Care services offered in Woodbridge, VA

Children with special needs are more likely to receive appropriate dental care if they have a dental home where they feel safe and comfortable. At Lifetime Dental Care, PLLC, in Woodbridge, Virginia, the board-certified pediatric dentists provide comprehensive and compassionate special needs care. Children with advanced medical or behavioral conditions can relax in the dental chair under sedation if necessary to ensure they receive the best care possible. To learn more, call Lifetime Dental Care, PLLC, or schedule an appointment online today. .

What is special needs care?

Special needs care is a dental specialty that focuses on providing preventive and restorative treatment for children with mental, physical, or behavioral challenges. 

At Lifetime Dental Care, PLLC, the board-certified pediatric dentists specialize in special needs care. They strive to provide a safe, comfortable space for children to relax and receive the care they need to maintain optimal oral health.

What oral health concerns does special needs care treat?

Special needs care prevents, manages, and treats many oral health concerns. Children with special needs are at an increased risk of developing the following dental problems:

Tooth decay (cavities)

Physical, mental, and behavioral challenges can sometimes make an optimal oral health routine difficult. If your child struggles to brush and floss twice a day, their teeth may be susceptible to cavities.

Malocclusions (bite problems)

Children with Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, and other developmental disorders may have bite problems that affect their speech and tooth alignment. Malocclusions can also impact breathing patterns and raise a child’s risk of teeth grinding (bruxism).

Gum disease

Like tooth decay, inconsistent oral hygiene habits can increase your child’s risk of gum disease, leading to shifting or loose teeth, bad breath, and tooth loss.

Delayed tooth eruption

Some children with developmental disabilities experience delayed tooth eruption. For example, many children with Down syndrome don’t get their first baby tooth after the age of two.

What types of sedation are available in special needs care?

Lifetime Dental Care, PLLC, offers several forms of sedation for individuals with special needs, including:


Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is the mildest form of sedation. Your child inhales the colorless and odorless gas that provides instant relaxation. The effects of nitrous oxide wear off within minutes after they stop inhaling.


Oral sedation involves taking a pill about 30 minutes before your child’s procedure. They may feel sleepy during the procedure, but your child should still be conscious.


During deep sedation, the team administers medication intravenously through an IV. Your child may be unconscious and monitored with a steady stream of oxygen if they undergo general anesthesia.

To learn more about special needs care, call Lifetime Dental Care or schedule an appointment online today.