Health Tip: Protect Baby's Teeth From Tooth Decay

Don't let your infant sleep with a bottle

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(HealthDay News) -- Tooth decay stemming from sugary drinks stored in baby's bottle can lead to a host of long-term dental problems.

The American Dental Association suggests how to protect baby's teeth:

  • Never place soft drinks, juice or sugared water in a baby's bottle. Only use the bottle for breast milk or formula. Never let baby take a bottle to bed.
  • Don't put baby's spoon or pacifier in your mouth. This will prevent transferring germs and bacteria.
  • Never dip a child's pacifier in anything sweet.
  • Wipe your child's gums with a damp, clean cloth after feedings. When teeth erupt and up until age 3, brush gently with a toothbrush and a rice grain-sized portion of fluoride toothpaste.
  • From ages 3 to 6, use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Continue supervising your child's tooth brushing until about age 6, when the child can reliably spit out toothpaste.
  • Switch to a regular cup by your child's first birthday.
  • Establish healthy eating habits from a young age.

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