Jake is 7 years old and has high functioning autism. He attends the clinic with his father. Jake has been experiencing severe facial pain and sensitivity in his teeth and gums. He seems to be highly stressed and when his father tries to describe his symptoms to you, Jake speaks over him in a loud, anxious tone.
- Ask Jake and his father to take a few moments to make themselves comfortable and settle into the room; give them a few moments to do so before you resume your questions.
- Agree a system of interviewing that will enable both to have time to respond, e.g. speak to Jake first, then ask his father to give any additional information needed.
- Before examination, fully explain what your examination will entail. Give both Jake and his father time to ask questions about the examination.
- Show Jake all equipment to be used for the examination and provide a demonstration if necessary.
- Describe the treatment strategy in detail and allow plenty of time for questions.
- Where possible provide written information or sources of online information that Jake and his father can look at together at home to alleviate Jake’s anxieties.
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