Tips for Tiny Teeth

There is nothing quite like seeing your baby smile with that first tiny tooth peeking through.  Take plenty of pictures, then take note of the following ways to help keep those teeth healthy:

1. Take care of Mommy and Daddy’s oral health.  This is something that you can start working on throughout pregnancy and before your baby even has teeth. Cavities are caused by the acidic environment created by the bacteria inside our mouths.  Because there is often transmission of bacteria from the parents’ mouths to the baby (through sharing of food, utensils, etc), it is important for the parents to have good oral hygiene and dental health. Avoid cleaning your baby’s pacifiers or toys with your own mouth, or using your teeth to bite off pieces of food for you child.

2. Practice good feeding techniques.  When your baby is young, make sure that you hold him while you are feeding him.  Propping up the bottle or letting him fall asleep with a bottle can lead to pooling of the milk around the teeth and increase risk of tooth decay.  When you baby gets older, avoid or minimize sugar sweetened drinks and foods.

3. Brush those teeth.  As soon as your baby has his first tooth, you should start “brushing” or wiping them down twice a day. BabyTeeth1 Use a wet cloth or a soft bristle brush.  Establishing this as a pattern early on can lead to less resistance to brushing as your child gets older. Under two: brush with plain water twice a day. Over two or when he knows how to spit after brushing: brush with a pea size amount of  fluoride toothpaste twice a day. While toddlers may try to exert their independence and brush on their own, children often need an adult to help them brush effectively until they are about school age.

4. Fluoride.  Fluoride helps to prevent cavities by preventing loss of dental enamel, or the protective outer covering of the tooth.  Fluoride in appropriate levels is found in most community drinking water in the US.  Fluoridated water along with fluoride-containing toothpaste usually provides adequate exposure for dental protection and additional supplementation is not needed.

5. Find a Dental Home.  The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that all children find a “dental home” by 1 year of age.  Their goal is to provide a resource for families and children for comprehensive oral health, dental education, and anticipatory guidance.  Ask your pediatrician for the names of dentists near you who are comfortable seeing children.

6. Protect them against trauma. For older children involved in contact sports, make sure they are using proper dental protection (mouth guards) to protect their permanent teeth.

Do you have a favorite child?

FavoriteChild

When we hear parents talk endlessly about the quirks of one child and the awesomeness of the other, it almost always comes with the disclaimer, “I love them all the same.” But guess what, children know the truth and they can sense the truth. And to … [Continue reading]

Nipple twiddling while nursing- how to stop the tweeks

NippleTwiddling

I thought twice about writing on this topic-- it seemed almost indecent-- but many moms have nervously asked me to address this this embarrassing and annoying problem.  Breastfeeding babies often twiddle the other nipple while nursing, and breaking … [Continue reading]

Enterovirus: taking the myths out of the mystery virus

Little girl with the flu

“Mysterious”, “tip of the iceberg”, “outbreak”, the list goes on. It made me nervous to watch the news and hear those terms and see the stories. I’m not sure why. I guess it was all the sudden attention to it and the big scary words use to … [Continue reading]

What are your family’s House Rules?

HouseRules2

Our favorite family dinner is my husband’s homemade pizza, thin crust topped with mozzarella and Parmesan. But when that pizza hit the table, the fighting and jealousy would start. Eight little hands would scramble to get the biggest pieces and fill … [Continue reading]

Did Cindy Crawford go too far: Your child’s risk of PCBs

Joe Kohen

Cindy Crawford recently pulled her children out of Malibu high school, expressing concern that the school is contaminated with PCBs, or polychlorinated biphenyls, a chemical known to cause cancer and a host of other health problems including … [Continue reading]

Parents beware – rhinovirus is here with force!

Little girl blows her nose

Rhinovirus has hit St. Louis early this year, and it’s hit us hard.  Rhinovirus causes the common cold-- a runny nose, sore throat, and sometimes fever, abdominal pain, and muscle aches.  We usually see a surge of patients with rhinovirus each fall, … [Continue reading]

Babies after 40: Three moms’ stories

Lilli

Recently I attended a delivery of a baby a baby born to a mother who was almost 50 years old.  I did a double-take when I saw her age on the chart-- this was the oldest mother I had ever seen deliver.  Her baby, who had Down Syndrome, seemed like a … [Continue reading]

Start the school year bully-free

Bullies

Now that school is back in session in most districts, parents are busy with activities and events around getting back into the school routine! It's a bitter-sweet feeling for kids and parents. While the relaxed days spent with family at home and … [Continue reading]

When the news is scary, how do I talk to my kids?

As a child psychologist and mother, I still struggle with the right words to share with my child – and I’m struggling especially hard this week. How much do I share about the violence and chaos in Ferguson, as well as attempt to explain the “why” … [Continue reading]

gold ira . jailbreak iphone 5c