Tooth decay is a common dental issue many adults in the United States face. In fact, around 90% of the adults in this country have cavities. Some of these develop from childhood if enough care and attention are not given to an infant’s oral health. Baby bottle tooth decay is very similar to when an adult experiences tooth decay.
Both involve the damage of the teeth due to the action of bacteria that release acids into the teeth. And this can be easily avoided if you take the right precautions and follow the tips for your little one! If you stay in Colorado and need advice regarding your or your child’s dental health, you can contact the dentist in Aurora for the same.
What is baby bottle tooth decay?
Also known as infant carries or bottle mouth, it usually occurs on the frontmost teeth of the child or the incisors. As mentioned, it is similar to tooth decay in adults. But, you must prevent it from happening to your children as it can affect the way your child’s teeth grow when they grow into adults. So, ensure your child’s oral health is monitored, and you do not slack off in providing the best care for them.
What causes baby bottle tooth decay?
Simply put, long-term exposure to sweet or sugary liquids causes tooth decay in babies. When you let your child sleep with the milk bottle in their mouth, or when you feed them a lot of formula milk, sugary syrups, or fruit juices, the bacteria in the baby’s mouth feed off of the sugar from these liquids and produce acid thus damaging the teeth.
Symptoms you can look out for
As mentioned earlier, tooth decay occurs mainly in the incisors of the children. You need to keep an eye out for these symptoms to take necessary action at the earliest:
- The child complains about a toothache
- You notice dark or brown spots on your child’s teeth
- Visible holes in the teeth
- Swollen or bleeding gums
- Discomfort in your child’s mouth
- Sometimes, a fever caused by the infection
How can I treat it?
You should always consult a dentist if you suspect your child has tooth decay. Discuss the best treatment option with them to prevent any further complications. Some of them may include:
- Remineralization by applying a layer of fluoride or changes in diet
- Dental filling or stainless steel crown if the decay has visibly damaged the tooth
- Tooth extraction if the infection has spread to the pulp of the teeth
It is advisable to avoid feeding too many sugary drinks to your child. Also, ensure you clean their mouth with clean water if they cannot brush their teeth yet.