Date of Defense

Spring 4-18-2011


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Nicholas A. Andreadis, Lee Honors College


teeth, dentistry, access to medical care


Those with physical and mental disabilities are at an increased risk of oral complications such as gingivitis and periodontal disease. In comparison with this risk, this population struggles to access appropriate dental care that accommodates those with disabilities. This thesis reviews the demographics of those with special needs, dental education barriers to working with this population and financial barriers that hinder access to care. An overview of the oral health problems of common disabilities is presented as well as behavioral management techniques that could be easily implemented in the dental office. A general review of good oral hygiene for those with special needs is also presented. This dissertation is intended to educate the dental community, parents, caregivers, and the general public of the dental management of those with special needs and to advocate increased access to care for this population.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access