Los Fresnos News

Baby Bottle Tooth Decay

Q: What is baby bottle tooth decay?


Dr. Grayson Sellers

Dr. Grayson Sellers

Baby bottle tooth decay is caused by the frequent & long-term exposure of a child’s teeth to liquids containing sugars. Among these liquids are milk, formula, fruit juice, sodas & other sweetened drinks. Every time a child consumes a sugary liquid, acid attacks the teeth & gums. After numerous attacks, tooth decay can begin. The condition is also associated with breast-fed infants who have prolonged feeding habits or with children whose pacifiers are frequently dipped in honey, sugar or syrup. Baby bottle tooth decay can be prevented by never allowing children to fall asleep with a bottle containing milk, formula or other sweetened liquids. Giving an infant a sugary drink at nap or night time is harmful because during sleep, the flow of saliva decreases, allowing the sugary liquids to linger on the child’s teeth for an extended period of time. If left untreated, pain and infection can result. Also, clean the baby’s gums to help establish healthy teeth & to aid in teething. Wrap a moistened washcloth around the finger & gently massage the gums & gingival tissues. This should be done once a day. Tooth brushing should begin upon eruption of the first baby tooth. When brushing a child’s teeth, use a soft toothbrush & a pea-shaped amount of fluoride toothpaste. Parents should first bring their child to the dentist between 6 & 12 months old. Healthy baby teeth will usually result in healthy permanent teeth. Call us if you have any questions or concerns about baby bottle tooth decay; we’re happy to help.


Dr. Adam Lalonde | Dr. Grayson Sellers | Dr. Eric Valle