"A handicapped special child is one who has a mental, physical, medical or social condition that prevents him or her from achieving full potential as compared to other children of the same age. (WHO) A handicapped (child) is one whose psychological development, social expression, play work is compromised due to a physical or mental problem or both .
The parents (or the guardian) have the initial responsibility for establishing good oral hygiene of the child. Home dental care should begin at infancy. The dentist should advice the parents to gently cleanse the incisors with a soft cloth or with an infant toothbrush. For older children who are unwilling or physically unable to cooperate, the dentist should teach the parent or guardian correct tooth brushing techniques.
The judicious use of systemic fluoride is important in the comprehensive management of any dental patient. The amounts of systemic fluoride supplementation necessary are available in the form of drops, tablets and rinses. Low concentration fluorides should be used as these children can accidentally swallow the fluoride solution or dentifrice causing fluoride toxicity.
Pit and fissure sealants reduce occlusal caries effectively. Sealants are appropriate in patients with disabilities. Patients with severe bruxism (grinding of teeth) and interproximal (between two adjoining teeth) decay may need their teeth to be restored with stainless steel crowns to increase the longevity of the restorations.