As a parent, it is your responsibility to protect your baby’s oral health. Fortunately you will have the help of your pediatric dentist, who will be able to advise you and educate you regarding your baby’s health. Keep reading for a parent’s guide to baby bottle tooth decay.
What It Is
Tooth decay often occurs when teeth are exposed to sugary substances for an extended period of time. Unfortunately, many kid-friendly drinks like milk and fruit juice contain sugars, so they should be given out in moderation. Baby Bottle Tooth Decay refers to a specific type of tooth decay that occurs in babies’ teeth. It is important to realize that baby teeth are not to be ignored; although they will eventually fall out, they set the stage for proper alignment later on in life and thus should be cared for.
Why It Happens
Many pediatric dentists see signs of Baby Bottle Tooth Decay in babies that are allowed to fall asleep with a bottle of milk, juice, or other liquid that contains sugar. When your baby falls asleep with a sugary drink, the liquid can spend an extended period of time coating his or her teeth. Unfortunately, the same situation can occur when you substitute a bottle for a pacifier. In some cases, a child may develop tooth decay due to bacteria from the primary caregiver’s mouth. For this reason, you should not clean off a pacifier or spoon with your own saliva.
How to Avoid It
Aside from changing the way you clean your baby’s pacifier or spoon, you can prevent Baby Bottle Tooth Decay by providing sugar-free drinks. You should also help your baby practice dental hygiene, always offer a clean pacifier, and make regular trips to the dentist’s office for routine dental checkups.
For more information about baby bottle tooth decay, contact Austin Dental Specialty Group or visit our website. We specialize in pediatric dentistry serving Austin, TX. You can learn much more about our services by calling us at (512) 961-3553 or stopping in to see us today.
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