The prevalence of autism in the United States has risen from roughly 1 in 125 in 2010 to 1 in 59 in 2020, according to the Autism Society of America. With prevalence on the rise, it only makes sense that our communities should promote awareness, acceptance, and practice inclusivity. That’s exactly why we’re recognizing and celebrating National Autism Awareness Month (NAAM) with this year’s campaign, Celebrate Differences.
“Designed to build a better awareness of the signs, symptoms, and realities of autism, #CelebrateDifferences focuses on providing information and resources for communities to be more aware of autism, promote acceptance, and be more inclusive in everyday life,” says the Autism Society.
At Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Specialists of Michigan, we are proud that our dental office is specially equipped to best accommodate children with autism. Our dentists have specialized training in the language we use, the techniques we practice and we have designed our office to make sure that all of our patients can experience “Special Care From the Beginning.”
Our doctors are board certified and complete further education and training each year. We try to promote a culture amongst our staff and environment in our office where everyone has a shared commitment for compassionate language, understanding and care that can meet the needs of all of our patients.
We understand the importance of familiarity. We encourage “first visits,” or meet-and-greets where your child can meet our dentists, staff and get to know the environment before any dental work is attempted.
Our pediatric dental office features 2 specially designed private care rooms where we can provide customized, controlled, and safe dental care for all children, especially when they are growing to be familiar with the sights, sounds, smells and other sensations associated with the dental office. Additionally, we grow with our patients to graduate them to an open bay clinic where they can experience like dental procedures amongst their peers. This open clinic was designed with purpose to foster confidence, inclusion and trust as children can experience similar procedures amongst their peers to develop confidence through shared experience.
“We aim to move up patients from private treatments to that shared experience in the main clinic, so they can experience similar procedures with their peers and learn that they aren’t alone in their experience and that others get their teeth taken care of in a similar way,” said Dr. Elizabeth Ralstrom.
To achieve that, we watch our patients carefully and communicate directly with parents to customize care and treatment for each child’s needs. We aim to increase the chances for success with home dental care so that visits to the dental office are more focused on preventative treatments and repair treatments are kept to a minimum.
We invite you t join us in celebrating National Autism Awareness Month and the campaign, Celebrate Differences! Let’s collectively spread awareness, promote acceptance, and ignite change.
About Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Specialists of Michigan
Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Specialists of Michigan has specialized in pediatric dentistry and orthodontics since 1968. Our family-friendly and newly renovated office gives patients and families a more comfortable and consistent experience with dentistry from the very beginning. Our pediatric dentists treat children from newborn to 18 years of age while our orthodontists provide care for both children and adults and are proud to be Premier Providers of Invisalign and Invisalign Teen services. We have the ability to treat all patients with compassion and individuality, including those that may have special needs as we have treatment rooms available for children who require additional privacy and customized care options. We pioneered valued hospital affiliations to allow dental services to be performed at DMC Children’s Hospital and St. John Macomb Hospital, when appropriate or necessary, and our specialists are also proud to be on staff at Henry Ford and Beaumont hospitals.