What Causes Tooth Decay in Babies
A baby develops tooth decay when the mouth is infected by acid-producing bacteria. There are different ways you can pass bacteria to babies, and one of them is through saliva like when you test food before feeding them to your baby. Another way is when your baby’s teeth and gums are exposed to food or liquid like milk and juice. The sugar in these liquids change to acid-producing bacteria and then dissolves the outer part of the teeth causing toot decay.
Wiping Baby’s Gums
Even when your infant does not have any teeth showing, they are still there, underneath the gums. At this point, nutrition is almost everything. Making sure your child is eating a healthy diet of either breast milk or formula is very important.
Then, after every feeding, just taking a warm cloth and very gently wiping off the gums helps remove any left over particles. As baby, the very worst thing you could possibly do is give your child any kind of soda. Kids who drink soda as a baby inevitably end up with cavities as young children.
As your baby grows, allowing them to take a bottle to bed is another invitation for cavities. There are many reasons for this. For one, you as the parent are not getting the chance to wipe off your babies gums, and also, bottles that are given in the bed usually have juice in them. Juice contains sugar, and then sugar is in the mouth all night long.
When To Use A Rubber Finger Toothbrush
A rule of thumb is, as soon as you start giving your child juice, you should be using one of those rubber finger toothbrushes to brush their emerging teeth and gums. There is even baby toothpaste you can use that is safe for babies, and great for their teeth.
Healthy Food = Healthy Teeth
Feeding your child properly as they are growing is very important for your child’s teeth. You can brush their teeth all day long, but if all you are giving them to eat is sugar, then their teeth are going to deteriorate. Teeth need nutrition. Calcium and Vitamin D especially. Make sure you are feeding them plenty of foods containing these nutrients.
When Should Your Toddler See A Dentist
Your child should see a dentist before the age of three. Just like you do wellness baby check-ups, you should do a well-tooth check-up. The Canadian Dental Association even recommends your baby visits a dentist within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth or by one year of age. It may seem young, but if there are any problems beginning to show, a dentist can help eradicate them before they become a big problem. A dentist can also help educate you as the parent on how to better care for your child’s teeth and help keep you baby’s teeth cavity-free.
There are actually many experts who will tell you that cavities are genetic. I have even heard that a person either has plaque, or they have cavities. Either way, your best way of helping you child ward off cavities is by the things you do for your child as a baby and maintain good oral health care as a family.