What is the continuum of behaviour guidance?
This is a summary of the article published in the Dental Clinics of North America: The continuum of behaviour guidance (January 2013)
Most treatments provided within the comprehensive dental care of children are relatively simple, yet many practitioners find that delivering high-quality care to young children is challenging simply because they are performed on a child.
The provision of dental care to children presents unique challenges and opportunities. To effectively treat children, providers must be prepared to address child behavior and leverage appropriate behavior guidance techniques.
- Behavior guidance is a continuum of skills spanning from basic to advanced techniques.
- Providing care to children requires understanding of the full continuum.
- Patient assessment includes anticipation of parental expectations, child temperament, and technical procedures. It dictates the appropriate behavior guidance technique for each child.
- Basic behavior guidance encompasses communicative behavior guidance, audiovisual distraction, nitrous oxide/oxygen inhalation, and delayed or alternative restorative treatment.
- Advanced behavior guidance encompasses protective stabilization, sedation, and general anesthesia. Its use should be restricted to those who have advanced training.
- By implementing the appropriate behavior guidance strategy, a healing relationship is maintained and the child is equipped to receive dental treatment throughout their lifetime.
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