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My Child Is Really Young. How Did They Get Caries?

Posted on 4/15/2024 by Weo Admin
woman holding a young baby and attempting to brush the baby's teethYou may think your child is very healthy, which means that they have no ongoing issues with their overall health. Parents of babies and toddlers celebrate each milestone in their lives, including when they get their first teeth. If your child has just started getting teeth, you may be surprised to learn that just because they recently had teeth erupt does not mean they cannot get dental caries. Here is an explanation of dental caries in young children.

Caring for Baby and Toddler Teeth

As soon as your child is born and begins a feeding routine, either breastfeeding or bottle feeding, you can begin cleaning their gums by wiping their mouths and gums with a washcloth. That way, your baby can get used to having their gums cleaned. After their teeth erupt, you can begin brushing the teeth twice a day, even if they only have one tooth erupted. Be sure that you are using fluoride-free toothpaste until your baby is past their second birthday.

How Did My Baby Get Caries?

There are many ways that babies can get dental caries, a type of tooth decay. When baby or toddler mouths are not cleaned regularly, bacteria can multiply. The acids in bacteria can begin to eat a hole in the tough and strong enamel. If the bacterial acid continues to eat away at the tooth enamel, it is called dental caries. Once the acids reach the dentin, which is the layer of tough bone tissue underneath the enamel, it is no longer called caries but instead, cavities.

Babies and toddlers usually get dental caries due to bottle or sippy cup drinking. If you allow your baby or toddler to take a bottle or sippy cup full of milk or juice during naptime or bedtime, those sugars can stay on their teeth for hours, which can eventually lead to dental caries. You will be able to spot caries if the teeth or gums have yellow or white spots or streaks.

Not sure if your baby or toddler has dental caries or cavities? Why not schedule an appointment to bring your child in to see our dentist?

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Dental Blog - San Jose, CA • Nancy Shiba, DDS
Nancy Shiba, DDS, 125 N Jackson Ave, Suite 103, San Jose, CA 95116-1914; (669) 306-7669;; 5/16/2024