Helping Infants Avoid Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
Tooth decay is rather common for infants and toddlers who use bottles and sippy cups. What causes this phenomenon and how can you help preserve your child’s teeth? Now is the time to break bad habits and help your child to start good ones that will be beneficial throughout life.
What Causes Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
The fact is that sugary drinks increase acidity levels in the mouth and feed the bacteria that cause tooth decay. So there are a few things that you can do to help cut back on cavities.
- Don’t put anything in a baby’s bottle besides breastmilk, milk, or formula. This is no place for sugary juices or sodas.
- If you use a pacifier, don’t put honey or any other type of sweetener on it.
- Brush your child’s teeth after feeding. Your child needs to brush at least twice a day.
- No juice until your baby is at least 6 months old, but even after that juice should be an occasional treat and not a regular drink.
- Don’t put your child to bed with a bottle. Not being able to brush afterward means that sugars stay on the baby’s teeth through the night.
Breaking a Bad Habit
What if your child is already used to drinking sweetened drinks from a bottle or sippy cup? Start diluting these drinks with water and gradually increase the dilution level over the course of a few weeks until your child will just drink water. Replacing sugary drinks with water now is a great way to keep your child from establishing a lifelong bad habit that can destroy his or her permanent teeth later.
At BRSH+FLSS, we care about your child’s future dental health. That’s why we focus on prevention rather than restoration. To schedule an appointment, call 619-741-1500, and let us help your child get on the road to a lifelong smile.