Pediatric Dental Care for Special Needs

We're guiding all children to a happy and healthy smile at Children's Dentistry: Tracy L. Wilkerson DDS .

Dentistry for Children with Special Needs

Better accessibility, better understanding, better care.

A kid playing as an astronaut

Are you looking for a patient, caring, and experienced dentist who works with special needs children? Is your child past due for a dentist visit, but you’re having trouble finding someone to accommodate your unique needs?

Our friendly dentist and team at Children's Dentistry: Tracy L. Wilkerson DDS in Charleston, WV helps children with developmental disabilities, physical limitations, and behavioral issues. By teaming up with parents like you, we help ensure a comfortable and anxiety-free visit for kids while guiding their dental health back on track.

Some disabilities make children more prone to dental problems such as teeth grinding, sensitivity, and misaligned teeth. In addition, certain medications may contribute to tooth decay and gum disease, so it’s especially important to maintain regular dentist appointments.

We make going to the dentist easier by combining compassion with care. Our dental services in Charleston, WV are all-inclusive to ensure every child has access to dentistry.

A kid playing as an astronaut

Why Choose a Special Needs Dentist for Children?


Your child is unique, and so are our services. We’re familiar with the different special needs of children for a wider range of personalized options, plus we offer home care tips.

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Whether you’re looking for a wheelchair-accessible dentist or an experienced doctor for special needs, our dental office is equipped for better convenience and mobility.

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We work at your child’s pace to promote a positive setting while delivering excellent oral care. Come in for a pre-appointment and get to know our team and services.

Hear from the Parents
‘‘Our family absolutely loves Children's Dentistry! Dr. Wilkerson and her staff are all so warm & friendly and great with children. They explained step-by-step what they were doing as they worked, which put my nervous daughter at ease. You can tell that Dr. Wilkerson invests her whole heart into her practice.’’

Heather S.

How Special Needs Pediatric Dental Visits Work

Our Charleston, WV dentist customizes visits for physical, emotional, and mental needs.

An assistant showing her patient a dental model

Most children have difficulty acclimating to a new dentist, but special needs children have extra challenges that hold them back from getting the care they need. In addition to this, sensory aversion, developmental disabilities, and congenital anomalies make hygiene harder to maintain.

With an increased risk of cavities and gum disease, our Charleston, WV special needs dentist encourages a preventive approach to find problems before they arise.

Step 1

Before coming in for the appointment, we want to learn about your child. Tell us what they like or don’t like and their unique needs. The more details you provide, the better prepared we’ll be ahead of time to create a comfortable atmosphere and smooth process from start to finish.

Step 2

Keep your child informed about their upcoming visit to the dentist and speak positively about the experience. We then invite you for a pre-appointment where your child meets the team, explores the office, and starts feeling more comfortable with the concept of dentistry. This is just a laid-back meet and greet.

Step 3

At the actual dentist appointment, your child sets the pace. Priority number one is your child’s comfort while addressing their short-term and long-term dental needs. In addition to providing high-quality care, we recommend ways to improve dental routines at home, such as dietary changes, adaptive aids for toothbrushes, and floss holders.

Oral health and overall health are closely linked, which is why visiting the dentist is a must. Children's Dentistry: Tracy L. Wilkerson DDS in Charleston, WV creates positive experiences at the dentist to keep your child coming back. After all, our goal is to see every child smile!

FAQ About Special Needs Dentistry for Children

Dr. Wilkerson answers your questions.

Is special needs dentistry a specialty?

Special needs dentistry is a specialty, but many general and pediatric dentists see special needs patients.

For example, did you know that pediatric dentists are also trained for special needs dentistry? After studying general dentistry, a pediatric dentist receives training for working with kids and special needs individuals. The result is specialized knowledge and training, plus increased awareness and adaptation for unique situations.

Think of it as care that goes beyond routine dental needs. Children's Dentistry: Tracy L. Wilkerson DDS works with patients with disabilities, congenital anomalies, and injuries that require extra attention while we help your child maintain or improve their oral health. In addition to helping in the office with gentle dentistry, our dentist recommends ways to make hygiene easier at home.

How often should a child with special needs visit the dentist?

It’s important for all children to see the dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings. Dental health is more challenging for special needs patients and your local dentist will help you set the best schedule.

Special needs children may be born with dental problems or develop them with time. Some examples include genetic disorders that lead to defects in tooth enamel, gum disease, missing teeth, and jaw misalignment.

In addition, some children have unique challenges around brushing and flossing their teeth or maintaining a healthy diet, which all contribute to a smile’s wellness. Our special needs dentist addresses issues due to development and sensitivity and provides tips for reaching optimal oral health.

Contact our Children's Dentistry: Tracy L. Wilkerson DDS pediatric dentist to schedule a pre-appointment or consultation.

What are the special needs of patients?

The special needs of patients vary based on each individual’s unique challenges. For example, patients with special needs may have a limited ability to care for their teeth, sit through appointments, or struggle with independence.

A special needs child may be disabled due to a medical condition, physical disability, cognitive limitation, or behavioral problem. Examples include spinal cord injury, brain trauma, anxiety, down syndrome, autism spectrum disorder (ASDs), and cerebral palsy.

With varying capabilities, our dental team gets to know your child and adapts our approach.

How do you treat special needs patients?

Step one in special needs pediatric dental care is getting to know your child. We must first understand their challenges to create personalized solutions for comfortable and effective dental care.

We never make any assumptions, rather we follow your lead and set up each visit to best accommodate your child’s unique needs. Your child can expect to be treated with the respect, patience, and professionalism everyone deserves.

Children's Dentistry: Tracy L. Wilkerson DDS helps your family overcome barriers to dental care with easier appointment scheduling and customized treatment plans.

What ages does a pediatric dentist treat?

A pediatric dentist treats children from several months to 18 years old.

We work with babies, infants, toddlers, children, preteens, and teenagers. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), your child should see a dentist after the first tooth erupts or by the first birthday.

It may seem early, but it’s important that your child grows accustomed to going to the dentist and stays proactive with their dental health. It’s less expensive and less painful to treat problems early on (with preventive dentistry) than treat them once they develop (reactive dentistry).

Meet Our Pediatric Dentist: Prevention Is the Key!

Schedule a preappointment to meet our team and explore the office.