Dental training for special needs patients

Jesse Millman, 25, is a young man who has a career in wealth management and is now making a difference when it comes to his peers with special needs. 

“I was telling my dad I didn’t want to see this dentist again” says Jesse.

Diagnosed with autism, Jesse was 5 when he found himself terrified to go to the dentist. But not because he needed a cavity filled, rather a regular checkup. Jesse and his parents wanted someone with a little more compassion. So after months of research, Jesse’s mom Karen found the right one.

“His pediatric dentist really spent time with us, got to know who he was as a person," said Karen Millman.  "A lot of sensory issues issues with his mouth, his hearing, with sounds.”

Two decades later, Jesse is still looking forward to going under the big bright light in the dentist chair.

So, he and his mom now want to help others.

They recently teamed up with the Touro Dental Medical College in Hawthorne which requires dental students to get trained in treating children and adults with special needs. 

On Friday, dental students who are set to graduate next year, met with patients with special needs as part of the training.

Jesse did his own presentation for a full hour.

“Dental and medical professionals may not know what to do with these patients so it’s fear so if they can learn, then we’re all in better shape," said Jesse.