Preventing Tooth Decay In Your Baby: How Bottles Contribute To Bacteria Growth

27 July 2017
 Categories: Dentist, Blog

Once you have a baby, your priorities quickly turn to the health of your new child. Doctor's appointments and nutrition are paramount to the health of any young child. However, some parents opt to put the dental appointments off until years later once all the baby teeth have come in. this can be a mistake, as baby teeth can begin decaying fairly early on. One critical cause of decay in babies is due to drinking from a bottle. The following is some information that you should consider while you decide when to take your young child to the dentist:

How Bottles Cause Decay in Baby Teeth

Tooth decay in babies who continually drink from a bottle happens when there is too much sugar on the teeth. The decay is typically found on the front teeth since that is where the sugar congregates the most, but it can also occur on the other teeth. The sugar exposure comes from juice, formula, milk, and any other drink the child consumes that contains sugar.

Regular use of bottles for drinking is fine for babies in his or her first year. However, prolonged use of the bottle after this age can increase the chance for bacteria and decay to develop.

Preventing Early Tooth Decay

To prevent any decay from occurring in your young child, the first thing you should do is discontinue the use of the bottle after the first year. By this age, a child can drink from a sip cup with no issue. Your child may have an attachment to the bottle and use it as a soothing mechanism. If it is difficult for the child to give up the bottle at first, fill it with water rather than milk or juice. Water will not cause any oral issues and the child will still feel soothed.

You also need to begin brushing the teeth daily if you have not already begun doing so. You can get a baby toothbrush or even a soft cloth to clean the child's teeth at least twice a day. Toothpaste is not necessary at this age. Just use some warm water and brush or clean as normal.

Finally, try to wean your child from sugary drinks, especially in bottles. Stick to milk in a cup a few times a day. If you want your child to have juice, consider watering it down with water by at least fifty percent. Doing these things will highly reduce the likelihood that your young child will experience tooth decay from bottle use. For more information, contact companies like Pedodontic Associates Inc.