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Travis Nelson, DDS, MSD, MPH

Travis Nelson

Associate Professor & Chair, Pediatric Dentistry


Dr. Nelson is a Associate Professor with the Department of Pediatric Dentistry at the University of Washington. He maintains hospital privileges at Seattle Children’s and is actively involved in dental treatment for all children. He supervises dental students and residents and cares for patients in the dental surgery center.
  • DDS, Loma Linda University, 2007
  • Certificate in Pediatric Dentistry, University of Washington, 2010
  • Master of Public Health (MPH), University of Washington, 2010
  • Diplomate, American Board of Pediatric Dentistry, 2012
  • Procedural sedation
  • Restorative dentistry
  • Dental care for children with special health care needs
  1. Nelson, T.M., Berg, J.H., Bell J.F., Leggott P.J., Seminario A.L. (2010) Assessing the Effectiveness of Text Messages as Appointment Reminders in a Pediatric Dental Setting. J Am Dent Assoc. 2011 Apr; 142(4):397-405.
  2. Nelson, T.M. The Key to Caries Prevention. Dimensions of Dental Hygiene. July 2011; 9(7): 48-50, 52-53.
  3. Nelson, T.M. The Consequences of Convenience. Dimensions of Dental Hygiene. February 2012; 10(2): 30-32, 34
  4. Nelson, T.M. An Improved Interim Therapeutic Restoration (ITR) Technique for Management of Anterior Early Childhood Caries. Pediatric Dentistry, July-August 35(4): E124-128.
  5. Nelson T., Nelson G. The Role of Sedation in Contemporary Pediatric Dentistry, Dental Clinics of North America, Volume 57, Issue 1, January 2013, Pages 145-161
  6. Nelson T. The Continuum of Behavior Guidance, Dental Clinics of North America, Volume 57, Issue 1, January 2013, Pages 129-143
  7. Velan E, Nelson T. Evaluating Caries Risk. Dimensions of Dental Hygiene, February 2014; 12(2): 53-56
  8. Quinonez R, Nelson T Pediatric Behavior Guidance in the 21st Century, Workshop Report: Advocacy and Policy, Pediatric Dentistry, March-April 2014 36(2): 158-160
  9. McKinney C, Nelson T, Scott, et. al. Predictors of Unmet Dental Need in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Results from a National Sample. Academic Pediatrics. November-December 2014; 14(6): 624-31
  10. Stieber, J, Nelson, T, Huebner, C. Considerations for the Use of Dental Photography and Electronic Media in Education and Clinical Practice. Journal of Dental Education. April 2014; 79(4): 432-438
  11. Nelson, T, Sheller, B, Friedman, C, Bernier, R. Educational and Therapeutic Approaches to Providing Dental Care to Patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Special Care in Dentistry May 2015; 35(3):105-13.
  12. Nelson, T, Huebner, C, Kim, A, Scott, J, Pickrell, J. Parent-Reported Distress In Children Under 3-years Old During Preventive Medical and Dental Care. European Archives of Pediatric Dentistry. 2015; 16(3),: 283-290
  13. Nelson T, Xu Z. Pediatric Dental Sedation: Challenges and Opportunities. Clinical Cosmetic and Investigational Dentistry. 2015: 7 : 97-106
  14. Lane, Nelson T, Thikkurissy S, Scott J. Assessing Temperament as a Predictor of Oral Sedation Success Using the Children’s Behavior Questionnaire Short Form. Pediatric Dentistry, 2015; 37(5): 429-35
  15. Nelson T, De Bord J. Strategies for Treating Children with Autism. Dimensions of Dental Hygiene. Dimensions of Dental Hygiene October 2015; 13(10): 61-64
  16. Nelson T, Scott J, Crystal Y, Berg J, Milgrom P. Silver Diamine Fluoride in Pediatric Dentistry Training Programs: Survey of Graduate Program Directors. Pediatric Dentistry, 2016; 38(3): 212-217.
  17. Nelson T, Huebner, C, Kim, A, Scott, J. A Pilot Study of Parent, Dentist, and Independent Rater Assessment of Child Distress During Preventive Dental Visits. The Journal of Dentistry for Children, 2016 83(2) May-August 2016
  18. Marion I, Nelson T, Sheller B, McKinney C, Scott J. Dental Stories for Children with Autism. Special Care in Dentistry. Special Care in Dentistry. 2016; 36(4): 181-186
  19. Nelson T, Griffith T, Lane K, Thikkurissy S, Scott J. Assessing temperament as a predictor of nitrous oxide inhalation success using the children’s behavior questionnaire short form. Anesthesia Progress. 2017 Spring; 64 (1):17-21.
  20. Nelson T, Chim A, Sheller B, McKinney C, Scott J. Predicting Successful Dental Examination for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. J Am Dent Assoc. 2017 July; 148(7): 485-492.
    *Republished with permission from Elsevier in the Journal of the Danish Dental Association: Danish Dental Journal
    *Selected for Article Analysis & Evaluation, The Journal of Evidence-Based Dental Practice 2017: 414-415
  21. Nelson T, da Fonseca M, Scott J, Hannanvash N, Weinstein P. Patient Care Agreements to Improve Pediatric Dental Compliance and Self-Efficacy. Pediatric Dentistry. 2017; 39(4): 299-303.
  22. Nelson T. SDF: Will Silver Really Become the New Gold Standard? Shift magazine, Sprig Oral Health Technologies. Spring 2018.
  23. Tamasas B, Godfrey G, Nelson T, Chen M. Oral Health Status of Children with Sleep Disordered Breathing. Journal of Dental Sleep Medicine. 2018 5(2)
  24. Aps J, Gazdeck L, Nelson T, Slayton R, Scott J. Assessment of the Location of the Mandibular Lingula in Pediatric Patients Using Cone Beam Computed Tomography Images. Journal of Dentistry for Children. 2018 May-August 85(2): 58-65
  25. Tamasas B, Nelson T, Chen M. Oral Health and Oral Health Related Quality of Life in Children with Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. 2019 Mar 15; 15(3):445-452
  26. Olacke B, Nelson T, Sarvas E, Scott J. The Effect of Biophysical Characteristics and Dosing on Pediatric Oral Sedation Outcome. Pediatric Dentistry. 2018; 40(5): 346-351.
  27. Rothen M, Choi G, Nelson T, Kim A. Innovations in Restorative Hygiene. Dimensions of Dental Hygiene, Perspectives on The Midlevel Practitioner. 2018; 16: 32-35.
  28. Nelson T, Van Duker M, (2019) Anterior Zirconia Crowns for Primary Incisors: A Novel Cementation Technique. Techniques in Dentistry and Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery. Springer, Cham.
  29. Yost Q, Nelson T, Sheller B, McKinney C, Chim A, Tressel W. Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder are able to Maintain Dental Skills: A 2-year follow-up of Desensitization Treatment. Accepted Pediatric Dentistry.
  30. Crystal Y, Janal M, Yim S, Nelson T. Teaching and utilization of SDF and Hall-style crowns in US Pediatric Dentistry residency programs. JADA. 2020 151(10) 755-763
  31. Nelson T, Nelson G, Rothen M, Kim A Comparison of In-Person and Remote Pediatric Dentistry Lectures Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic. J Dent Educ. 2021;00:00-00
  32. Fazeli A, Nelson T, Fazeli M, Lin Y, Scott J. The Effect of Topical Epinephrine on Cardiovascular Outcomes in Children Receiving Prefabricated Zirconia Crowns: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Anesthesia Progress 2021; 68 (3): 133-140
  33. Nelson T, Wilson S, Tanbonliong T. Opioid and Multi-Drug Pediatric Dental Sedation: A Narrative Review. Journal of Dentistry for Children. 2022;89(1):57-65
  34. Ibrahim H, Nelson T, Xu Z, Thikkurissy S, Scott J. Comparison of Procedures, Time, and Fees Associated with Procedural Sedation and General Anesthesia in a Pediatric Dentistry Residency Program. J Dent Child. 2022 May 15:89(2):104-109
  35. Douglas P, Sheller B, Nelson T, Velan E. Comparing a Surgery Center with a Hospital for Pediatric Dental Surgery. Anesthesia Progress. 2022; 69(4): 3-8.
  36. Lee R, Wang K, Forsyth A, Garcia M, Scott J, Nelson T. The Effect of Temperament on Outcomes of Opioid and Non-Opioid Pediatric Dental Sedation. J Dent Child. 2024; 91(1): 149-155.
  37. Nelson T, Khosravi R, Ramos V, Hong S, Cook D. Interdisciplinary Dentistry for Complex Pediatric Dental Cases. International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry. 2024; 00: 1–9.
  1. Nelson T. A Physician’s Guide to Identifying Pediatric Dental Decay and Common Oral Pathology. MedEdPORTAL; 2012. Available from:
  2. da Fonseca, M, Nelson, T.M.Chapter 14: The Use of General Anesthesia in Behavior Management. In: Wright G, Kupietzky A, eds. Behavior management in dentistry for children. 2nd Edition, Wiley-Blackwell; 2014: 185-195. 3rd Edition, Wiley-Blackwell; 2020.
  3. Nelson T., Hein C, Empowering Physicians, Nurses and other Non-Dental Healthcare Providers in Caring for the Oral Health of Children and Adolescents. Oral-Systemic Health Education for Non-Dental Healthcare Providers. Colleges of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Manitoba. October 2014.
  4. Waggoner W, Nelson T. Restorative Dentistry for the Primary Dentition In: Fields, Casamassimo, McTigue, Nowak. Pediatric Dentistry, Infancy through Adolescence. 6th Edition. Elsevier; 2019.
  5. Nelson T. Killian C., Followell T., Tesini D., Patients with Special Health Care Needs In: Nowak and Casamassimo, The Handbook of Pediatric Dentistry. 5th Edition. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry; 2018.
  6. Kotsanos N., Nelson T., Behavior Guidance and Communicative Management In: Pediatric Dentistry. Evidence Based Total Care. 1st English Edition. Springer-Nature Publishing. In Preparation.
  7. Nelson T., de Bord J. Eds., Dental Care for Children with Special Health Care Needs: A Clinical Guide. Springer. 2019