Tufts OpenCourseware
Authors: John Morgan, Bonnie F. Zimble

Sensory Impairment:

What is Sensory Impairment? What are its Main Dental


Special Care in Dentistry
John Morgan, DDS
Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, 200

Study Questions

  1. What is meant by sensory impairment, and what are its causes?
  2. What are the two main dental considerations of sensory impairment?

What is Sensory Impairment? 

Sensory impairment refers to the total or partial loss of sight or hearing. The causes of sensory impairment are categorized according to the time of onset, and can be either congenital or acquired. The causes of sensory impairment may include heredity, prematurity, maternal diabetes, rubella, meningitis, infections, trauma during delivery, and accidents. 

What are the main dental considerations? 

·       Bruxism/tooth grinding is very common, especially during periods of inactivity, possibly to fill the sensory void left by the disability

·       There is also an increased prevalence of enamel dysplagia