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Parent-reported experience of using a real-time text messaging service for dental appointments for children and young people with autism spectrum conditions: a pilot study
Parry, Jennifer A.
Introduction: Children and young people (CYP) with autism spectrum conditions (ASCs) and their parents/carers find dental appointments stressful. Consultation with parents of CYP with ASC identified time spent in dental waiting areas as contributing to dental anxiety. Parents proposed waiting outside the dental practice until the clinician was ready could help mitigate anxiety. Aims: To evaluate a real‐time text messaging service (RTMS) to improve dental attendance experience for CYP with ASC. Methods: An RTMS was developed for use in the dental clinic. Parents/carers of 17 CYP with ASC (4 to 20 years) attending a Special Care Dental service were invited to share their dental experience and the impact of using the RTMS. Results: Parent experience suggests that time in waiting areas can increase anxiety in CYP with ASC. All parents viewed the RTMS as having a positive impact on CYP dental attendance experience. The majority believed that it reduced anxiety and enabled CYP to be more accepting of dental treatment. Discussion: Many CYP with ASC have dental anxiety exacerbated by the use of waiting areas. Findings demonstrate the importance of considering and developing a range of approaches that respond to the needs of CYP with ASC and their families to improve dental attendance experience.
Autism spectrum conditions , Dental anxiety , Real‐time text messaging service
Holt, S. and Parry, J. A. (2019) 'Parent-reported experience of using a real-time text messaging service for dental appointments for children and young people with autism spectrum conditions: A pilot study', Special Care in Dentistry, In Press, doi: 10.1111/scd.12347
© 2018 Special Care Dentistry Association and Wiley Periodicals, Inc. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Holt S, Parry JA. Parent‐reported experience of using a real‐time text messaging service for dental appointments for children and young people with autism spectrum conditions: A pilot study. Spec Care Dentist. 2018;1–5, which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/scd.12347. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving."