Baby bottle tooth decay is something that causes your child’s young natural teeth to decay. Nursing bottle mouth can also be a problem in young children, causing early cavities. It is a condition that can be avoided.
When children nurse and bottle feed, they are exposed to sugary liquids for a great length of time, leaving the health of the child’s teeth and gums in a vulnerable position. This includes extended nursing on milk that includes breast milk feeding, juice, and formula at naptime and bedtime.
Avoiding Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
- To tooth decay that results from a bottle, you will want to avoid the following:
- Do not get in the habit of offering your child a bottle as a pacifier.
- Avoid laying your child down at naptime and bedtime with a bottle. If your child insists on a bottle, then fill the bottle with plain water as opposed to formula, milk or juice.
- Never offer your child a pacifier that has been dipped in sugar or honey.
- Baby Gum Care
After each bottle or breast milk feeding, it is important to brush gently the gums of your baby using a baby tooth and gum cleanser or water. Brush with a soft bristle brush that is designed for baby brushing. You can also wipe the gums of your baby with a gauze pad or a soft, damp washcloth.
It is important to understand that you should not wait until the first tooth cuts to begin early prevention of tooth decay. You should begin an oral health routine for your child right from their first days of life. This is because you will help to ensure healthy gums and teeth.
What To Do When Your Child is Teething
Typically, your baby will first get in their two lower front teeth at around the age of six months. The two upper central incisors will then follow. During the following 18 to 24 months, the rest of their baby teeth will come in. Teething signs include fussiness and drooling and the urge to place objects in the mouth. You may find that your baby also may run a temperature. All are considered normal while teething. However, if your child begins to run a fever, then it is important to contact your physician.
You can help your baby to alieve the pain associated with teething by running a cold, wet finger over their gums or by using a cold, damp gauze cloth. Other things that can help include a cool teething ring, a piece of toast or a teething biscuit. There are also medications that can be used on the gums, but you will want to consult with your physician prior to using any medications.
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