September 23, 2020
Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
What is baby bottle tooth decay?
Baby bottle tooth decay is caused by the frequent and long-term exposure of a child’s teeth to liquids containing sugars. Among these liquids are milk, fruit juice, sodas, and other sweetened drinks. The sugars in these liquids pool around the infant’s teeth and gums, feeding the bacteria that cause plaque. Every time a child consumes a sugary liquid, acid attacks the teeth and gums. After numerous attacks, tooth decay can begin. The condition is also associated with breast-fed infants too who have prolonged feeding habits or with children who refuse to eat food dipped in honey, sugar, or syrup. The sweet fluids left in the mouth increases the chance of cavities while the infant is sleeping.
How can I prevent baby bottle tooth decay?
1) Never allow children to fall asleep with a bottle containing milk, formula, juice, or other sweetened liquids.
2) Be sure to clean and massage the baby’s gums once a day to help establish healthy teeth.
3) Before a child can spit, be sure to use a non-fluoride toothpaste.
4) Consult your dentist once every 6 months.
Giving an infant sugary drink during nighttime is harmful because, during sleep, the flow of saliva decreases, allowing the sugary liquids to linger on the child’s teeth for an extended period of time.
Think baby teeth are temporary, and therefore, not important? Think again. Baby teeth are necessary for chewing, speaking, and smiling. They also serve as placeholders for the adult teeth. If left untreated, pain and infection will occur. Severely decayed teeth may need to be extracted. If teeth are infected or lost too early due to baby bottle tooth decay, your child may develop poor eating habits, speech problems, crooked teeth, and damaged adult teeth. Healthy baby teeth will usually result in healthy permanent teeth.
Wassan Dental offers the best pediatric dental treatments in Oman. Call us today for an appointment to fix your kids’ dental troubles.