Dalal Dental Care - Dr. Alpa Dalal DDS

Early Childhood Tooth Decay: What Parents Need To Know

April 28, 2023 - by Dr. Alina Panjwani (guest writer) - in Community, Health

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It is exciting to see your baby’s first teeth at the age of 6 months. But did you know that baby’s teeth are also susceptible to dental decay? Baby teeth will eventually fall out. Falling off baby teeth before time can disrupt the position of permanent teeth. It is not only painful to the child but also impacts the child’s quality of life. By keeping a few things in mind, you can stop a child’s teeth from decaying.

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease. Both children and teens are prone to tooth decay. Early childhood tooth decay can cause severe pain and early tooth loss. If your child has any white chalky or brown pinpoint appearance on the tooth, consult the pediatric dentist near you.

Other name for early childhood tooth decay is:
Nursing bottle caries
Baby bottle caries

These names are used as the child sleeps with a bottle of milk or formula. Sugar in milk, juices, and formulas causes decay.

Sugars from food and milk are consumed by bacteria in the mouth. These microorganisms create acid and erode the outer layer of the tooth called enamel. Plaque is formed by a mixture of bacteria, saliva, and acid. This plaque creates a cavity in enamel causing decay and pain in the teeth. Early childhood caries can also occur in a toddler who drinks sweet drinks or soft drinks on a regular basis.

Causes of early childhood tooth decay
• Poor oral hygiene
• Consuming too many sugars food and sugar drinks
• Less saliva flows

Why is it important to take good care of a baby’s teeth?
• Baby teeth are the guides for permanent teeth eruption. Missing teeth leaves a gap between teeth and there might be shifts in the teeth and causing crowding in permanent teeth.
• Tooth decay can also interfere with a kid’s ability to eat, sleep, speak, and play.

Few regular practices for maintaining your child’s dental health.
• Remove the bottle from the baby’s mouth after he sleeps
• Never put sweet drinks in the baby’s bottle
• After 6 months of age, teach them to drink from cups. Avoid bottles
• Examine the mouth regularly
• Regular dental visits are also important for children for treating early signs of decay.

Introducing health habits
• Baby’s teeth are already present in the jaws but you cannot see them. Start practicing brushing, initially, wipe the gums with damp gauze after they eat or drink milk.
• As the teeth start erupting, gently brush their teeth without any toothpaste
• As they grow and know how to spit and use fluoridated toothpaste

A dentist near you can check for any decay and restore it without causing any pain to the child.
If the decay is not filled then it will perk the pain and health of the kid.

Dr. Dalal is one of the top-rated dentist in Pleasanton CA, can treat childhood tooth decay, cavities and other oral health issues. To know more about dental treatment for children, and adults, contact us today at 925-660-7676.

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Dr. Alina Panjwani (guest writer)


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