Your child’s baby teeth are important, even though they are only temporary. They are still susceptible to cavities. Children need strong, healthy teeth to chew their food properly, as well as to speak distinctly and have a good-looking smile. Baby teeth also help to ensure that permanent teeth come in correctly. Starting infants off with good oral care will help protect their teeth for decades to come.

While there are many problems that can cause decay, “Baby Bottle Tooth Decay” is one that affects countless children. It occurs when the baby is put to bed with a bottle or when a bottle is used as a pacifier. Baby Bottle Tooth Decay attacks the upper front teeth most frequently; however, other teeth can also be damaged. The baby’s teeth shouldn’t be exposed to drinks that contain sugar frequently or for extended periods. Bacteria in the mouth thrive on sugars and make acids that attack the teeth.

The good news is that Baby Bottle Tooth Decay is preventable. Here’s how:

  • Infants should finish their bedtime and naptime bottles before going to bed.
  • After each feeding, wipe your child’s gums with a clean, damp gauze pad or washcloth.
  • If your child uses a pacifier, provide one that is clean – and don’t dip it in sugar or honey.
  • Floss once two or more adjacent teeth come in.
  • Encourage your child to drink from a cup by his or her first birthday.

When your child’s first tooth appears, please call us to schedule your first visit.