What’s The Best Way to Care for My Baby’s Teeth?

Good oral care starts from the very beginning, even before his or her first teeth emerge. Numerous factors can affect their future appearance and health. For instance, tetracycline, a common antibiotic, can cause tooth discoloration. For this reason, they should not be used by nursing mothers or by expectant mothers in the last half of pregnancy.

Since baby teeth usually emerge around six months of age, standard oral health procedures like brushing and flossing aren’t required for infants. However, infants have special oral health needs that every new parent should know about. These include guarding against baby bottle decay.

How Can I Prevent Baby Tooth Decay?

Baby Tooth decay is caused by exposure, over long periods of time, to liquids containing sugars. These include milk, formula, and fruit juices. The sugary liquids pool around the teeth for long periods of time as your baby sleeps, leading to cavities that first develop in the upper and lower front teeth. For this reason, you should always make sure your baby doesn’t have a bottle in his / her mouth when falling asleep. Instead, at bedtime, give your child a bottle filled with water or a pacifier recommended by your dentist. If you breast-feed, avoid letting the baby nurse continuously. And after each feeding, wipe your baby’s teeth and gums with a clean, damp cloth or a gauze pad.

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