4 Tips for Avoiding Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
Oral health is important for infants, but it is something they cannot take care of on their own. This calls for responsible parenting and understanding how to avoid things such as baby bottle tooth decay which affects many little ones. Here are 4 tips to help you protect your child.
- Use the bottle for feeding, not soothing – Some parents use the baby bottle as a way to calm their child every time he or she is upset. Instead of always turning to food for soothing, try other methods such as a pacifier.
- Don’t dip the pacifier in sweeteners – This may seem obvious, but if you coat the pacifier in a sweetened liquid, it completely defeats the purpose of using the pacifier rather than a bottle to soothe the child.
- Clean your baby’s teeth and gums – Before teeth start to grow in, all you need is a clean, moistened cloth to wipe the gums after feeding. As your child’s teeth start to come in (around 6 months), you will want to use a soft toothbrush with a tiny dot of infant-friendly toothpaste (about the size of a grain of rice should do).
- Don’t put your baby to bed with a bottle – After the last feeding at night and a good cleaning of the gums and teeth, there shouldn’t be another feeding unless your child wakes up during the night. Even then, you should finish the feeding and repeat teeth and gum cleaning. Leaving a bottle with your baby in bed leads to hours of the sugars from the milk being on his or her teeth. It is a sure way to escalate decay.
Tips for Parents to Keep a Child’s Teeth Healthy
Keep up with the BRSH+FLSS Pediatric Dentistry blog for more tips and tricks regarding dental health and cavity prevention. Don’t forget to schedule your child’s two annual dental checkups. Call us today at 619-741-1500 to make an appointment.