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Can I clean my toddler's teeth with a washcloth?
Q: My 16-month-old daughter will not let me brush her teeth. She cries and pushes my hand away. I let her have the toothbrush when I'm brushing my teeth so she can see that Mommy brushes. She mostly chews on it and occasionally gets the front teeth. There already seems to be a bit of discoloration on her bottom teeth. Should I continue this way and hope that she eventually gets the idea? Will using a washcloth along with her attempts be sufficient?
Carolann
A: Regarding your daughter's resistance to brushing, refer to my answer to a similar question posed by Olga in Aruba. As for the washcloth, it can help clean your daughter's teeth, but a brush works better. Try to make brushing fun by incorporating a toy or music, and just keep at it. This is sometimes a trying experience, but it's just a phase. Your daughter will get past it. In the meantime, you just have to clean her teeth to keep her healthy.
Gregory F. George D.D.S.