If you have an infant with several teeth that have started to erupt, then you should start thinking about oral health right now. Specifically, dental decay can start to form in the baby teeth as soon as they are visible in the mouth, and the cavities from these teeth can actually work their way down and into the forming adult teeth. And, one specific issue that can cause the cavities is called baby bottle tooth decay. Keep reading to learn what this is and how it can be avoided.
What Is Baby Bottle Tooth Decay?
Baby bottle tooth decay is a decay issue that forms due to a child's prolonged oral exposure to many sugary drinks. These drinks leave sugars in the mouth that act as a food source for bacteria and the bacteria can cause extensive decay as they remain active in the mouth. And, oftentimes the cause of the decay is when a parent leaves their infant to fall asleep with a bottle in the mouth.
The decay issue will often develop within the front upper teeth, and since the front of the mouth is where the first adult teeth come in, then the issue may start to form in these teeth if a bottle is left in the mouth for too long.
Baby bottle tooth decay is also something that can develop if your child is not provided with adequate amounts of fluoride. Since fluoride helps to encourage strong dental enamel, the lack of the mineral can leave the teeth susceptible to decay issues.
How Can The Issue Be Treated?
The best way to encourage the oral health of an infant is to make sure that dental decay issues are prevented altogether. You should not give a child a bottle to keep with them in their crib when lying down for a nap or when going to bed in the evening. Also, you want to gently clean the teeth and gums with a washcloth, water, or toothpaste multiple times a day to remove sugars from the mouth.
You also need to make arrangements to have your child see a pediatric dental professional on a regular basis. The professional can inspect the teeth and look for signs of cavities that are just starting to develop so they can be watched long-term to make sure they do not develop into cavities. If cavities are located, they can then be removed and filled while they are still small and unlikely to cause a more serious oral health issue.
For more help, contact a company like Apollo Dental Center today.