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Children's Tooth Decay: Causes and Prevention

As a parent, you want your kid to grow up to be healthy. This should entail laying a firm foundation of oral and dental health for your children, as well as avoiding tooth decay. (Best dentist in Penang)

While you may believe that being a dentist offered me an unfair edge, that is not the case. Understanding how cavities grow and the causes of cavities in babies, toddlers, and older children may help you prevent cavities in your own children.

Cavities may affect newborns as early as six months old because dental decay can affect any exposed tooth, even if it’s only pushed through. It’s surprising, but it’s the truth. And, since I know you don’t want that to happen to your child, this article will provide you all you need to know about the causes and prevention of tooth decay in children.

What Causes Cavities to Form?

When you ingest sugary meals, processed carbohydrates, or any other food that converts to sugar once digested, naturally occurring bacteria in your mouth feed on these sugars. They then form bacteria clusters that exude extremely acidic waste onto the teeth, covered by a coating of plaque. This acid subsequently eats away at the enamel of the teeth, creating cavities.

Cavity creation is neither a quick nor a certain process. Aside from the nutrients that promote bacteria development, numerous other elements must come together for a cavity to form. Cavities are created by the oral microbiome (balance of good and harmful bacteria in the mouth), pH (cavity-causing bacteria flourish in acidic environments), and saliva quality.

You can prevent new cavities from developing if your microbiome is balanced and you’re eating the right foods, taking the right nutrients, and avoiding or restricting acidic foods and beverages. In reality, you can naturally reverse minor, existing cavities without the need of fillings.

Cavities, on the other hand, are a certain occurrence if hazardous bacteria are given the perfect habitat to thrive in. The acids produced by the bacteria eat away at your teeth, exposing nerves in the process, resulting in the pain and sensitivity to warmth and cold that we associate with cavities.

This process also applies to children, so if you want to preserve your child’s smile healthy and bright, be aware of the situations that lead to cavities and do all you can to avoid them.

Hundreds of my patients have benefited from my assistance in breaking the cavity cycle. That answer is now available to my readers and their families. For less than the cost of one filling, click here to learn how to say “goodbye” to cavities for good.

Tooth Decay in Babies and Toddlers: What Causes It?

I suggest that parents take their children to the dentist at the age of six months, when their first teeth usually show.

Although this may seem early, I encourage it since cavities in very young newborns are uncommon. According to the National Institute of Tooth and Craniofacial Research, 27% of children aged 2 to 5 have untreated dental decay.

Some of the most prevalent causes of tooth decay in newborns and toddlers include:

Brushing or wiping infant teeth is not recommended.

Keep your baby’s early teeth clean to prevent plaque buildup and deterioration. You may use a damp cloth to clean your child’s teeth until they develop a full set of teeth that need a toothbrush. Because formula and even breastmilk have a significant sugar content, you should clean your baby’s teeth after each meal.

Providing an excessive amount of sugary beverages

As I already said, even breastmilk is considered sweet, as is any other non-water beverage. It’s tough to avoid these beverages entirely while your infant is small and reliant on breastmilk or formula for nutrition. Again, this is why I advise you to wipe your baby’s teeth after each meal.

I recommend restricting or eliminating sugary liquids, including juice, once the youngster is old enough to consume solid meals. These beverages, along with sugary and starchy meals, are erosion-causing bacteria’s favorite diet.

Avoiding going to the dentist

Delaying dental appointments until your child has a full set of teeth (or longer) may delay the development of good oral habits and the detection of plaque buildup. The longer plaque sits undetected and isn’t removed by a dentist, the more likely it is to cause deterioration.

(Waiting too long between your child’s first and future dental appointments might induce dental anxiety.)

Using a bottle to put toddlers to bed

Giving your kid a bottle or a sippy cup at night may help him go asleep, but it might also harm his teeth. Sugars from formula, juice, and other liquids are immediately deposite on the teeth by bottles and sippy cups. And when that touch continues while the baby is asleep, bacteria proliferate and cause baby bottle tooth decay.

If you give your kid a bottle or a cup before bed, make sure you take it away and brush his teeth before he goes to sleep.

Tooth Decay Prevention for Babies and Toddlers

Let’s look at some preventative methods now that we know the most prevalent causes of cavities in newborns and toddlers:

  • After bottle-feeding or nursing, gently clean your baby’s teeth and gums with a moist towel.
  • After eating or drinking, give your infant or toddler a few swallows of water to wipe away any remaining sweets in the mouth.
  • Never send a baby or toddler to bed with a bottle or sippy cup to avoid extended sugar exposure on their teeth.
  • Your child’s first dental appointment should be between six months and a year old, or whenever his first tooth appears.
  • Make sure toddler finger snacks and meals are abundant in vitamin K2, vitamin D, and other tooth-friendly elements. Too much grains or legumes with phytic acid (which causes tooth decay) should be avoid.
  • Teach your kid proper dental hygiene by helping him brush his teeth with a child-specific toothbrush.

If you found anything in this article valuable or know someone who could benefit from it, please share it!

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