Caring for your child's teeth

Pediatric Dentist Michelle Kelman, DDS, shares advice for parents on how to properly take care of your child's teeth, starting from the time he or she is born up to the time they can brush teeth on their own
Tips For Taking Care Of Your Young Child's Teeth
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Caring for your child's teeth

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Dental care should start the moment your child is born. Basically, if you fed your child with breastfeeding or with bottle feeding, you should always wipe down the gums immediately after feeding. You can take a wet washcloth or a wet gauze, preferably warm so you don't bother them, and just wipe down the gum area so that there's no milky substance on it. Then once the first tooth comes out, that's when you start brushing that tooth. I feel that if your child isn't spitting yet, it's best not to use a flouride toothpaste, but use a toddler flouride-free toothpaste. Once your child starts to learn to spit, if they're under the age of two then it's best to just use a slither of fluoride toothpaste on the toothbrush. If they're age two to six, you can start using a pea-size and then have them spit it out. It's best to brush after meals. And I always like to say if you're coming home from a birthday party, it's a good idea to brush as well to get all the sugary snacks out of the way. If you're coming from a birthday party or a fun day at an amusement park, it's always a great idea to brush your child's teeth when your child comes home. And if your child doesn't want to brush his teeth, always remember, if you let them brush your teeth first, then they're going to want to brush their own teeth. Or at least take turns. If you have them look in the mirror, it's even easier. I always recommend kids-sized mirrors that can go right over the bathtub so they don't have to step on a ladder and fear falling over.

Pediatric Dentist Michelle Kelman, DDS, shares advice for parents on how to properly take care of your child's teeth, starting from the time he or she is born up to the time they can brush teeth on their own

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Michelle Kelman, DDS

Pediatric Dentist

Dr. Michelle M. Kelman is a specialist in pediatric and adolescent dentistry for healthy children and children with complex medical history. Dr. Michelle is on the Pediatric Surgical Team and Craniofacial Team at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and on faculty at the UCLA School of Dentistry, Pediatrics. Dr. Michelle has lectured internationally and taught continuing education courses on topics including pediatric patient behavior management and advancements in pediatric dentistry. These advancements include everything from equipment technology to introducing complementary and alternative therapies for your child's health needs. Active in the community, Dr. Michelle has offered numerous pediatric oral healthcare presentations to community groups, professional organizations and various healthcare professionals around the country with a special emphasis on pediatric behavior management and dental treatment using both traditional and natural methods for children with various medical conditions.

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