Is your Baby at Risk for Bottle Decay?

One of the most chronic infections in children is tooth decay. Children are exposed to the bacteria which cause cavities (Streptococcus mutans)as babies. The germs are usually transmitted from a parent, sibling, or caretaker’s mouth through affection or sharing utensils. When a child has S. mutans in their mouth and then they go to…

One of the most chronic infections in children is tooth decay. Children are exposed to the bacteria which cause cavities (Streptococcus mutans)as babies. The germs are usually transmitted from a parent, sibling, or caretaker’s mouth through affection or sharing utensils. When a child has S. mutans in their mouth and then they go to sleep with a bottle and suckle on and off all night, they can end up with baby bottle tooth decay. Knoxville family dentist, Dr. Jim Erpenbach feels this should remain in the radar of all new parents.

What is Baby Bottle Decay?

Baby bottle decay occurs when the acids from sugary liquids in a bottle attack a baby’s teeth. At the same time, germs feed on the sugar and create more acid. This weakens the tooth enamel on your child’s new teeth, providing a breeding ground for hungry and destructive bacteria. Fruit juice is an obvious culprit for unwanted sugar in a baby’s diet. Even if you water down juice, the sugar is still capable of feeding bacteria. Formula and breast milk also have sugar. As your baby’s saliva output decreases during sleep those germs aren’t washed away as easily as they would during the day. The best way to avoid tooth decay is to break the habit of free-feeding your baby and wipe their gums and teeth with a clean cloth following feedings.

Unnecessary Cavities

Baby teeth begin to erupt around when they are six months old. The tooth enamel layer of teeth is strong and protective, but it is thinner on primary (baby) teeth. You might think that baby teeth are expendable anyway, so losing them early is no big deal. Early baby tooth loss actually presents developmental issues with emerging teeth. Cavities also take a long time to spread to the point of tooth loss, and in that time they will create pain as well as difficulty eating and speaking. For this reason, Dr. Erpenbach does put fillings in baby teeth on occasion. If the infection is not stopped and the tooth restored, extraction may be necessary which can create a scary experience for your little one.

Visit your Knoxville Family Dentist

Dr. Erpenbach can ensure that there are no dental or developmental problems with your child’s smile. Contact our Knoxville dental office in Knoxville, TN at (865) 240-2035 to schedule an appointment.

Read more http://68.178.130.8/~erpenbac/knoxvilledentist.co/?p=907

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