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Let’s look at a common childhood concern–Early Childhood Caries– and address some basics about it, as well as what to do to prevent it.

You can keep your child from developing Early Childhood Caries, also called Baby Bottle Tooth Decay. Start an oral hygiene habit for your child a few days after they are born, by gently wiping the gums with a damp, clean gauze pad. Do this after each time your child eats. When the child gets her or his first tooth above the gumline, begin brushing teeth very gently with a soft-bristled brush and a rice-grain-sized dab of fluoride toothpaste. Both of these practices prevent plaque from building up on your child’s teeth, which would cause decay. Continue to assist and then supervise brushing teeth until your child is about 6 or 7 and can do it on their own safely.

Additionally, you can help prevent tooth decay by avoiding sugar-water, soda, and juice in bottle. Only put breast milk, milk, or formula in baby’s bottles. Even then, prolonged exposure to the sugary liquid could contribute to Baby Bottle Tooth Decay, thus, babies should finish their bottle before sleeping at naptime or bedtime.

For more information, call Smile Big Pediatric Dentistry in Humble, Texas, at 713-697-6453. Dr. Shannon De Vera and our team are happy to help!