Top Reasons for Cavities in Children’s Smiles
At Montefiore Medical Center, our team of providers see children on a regular basis who are in need of dental fillings. It is important for parents to fully understand the ways in which decay develops on a child’s smile so that they can take appropriate measures to keep it from happening again. Below are some of the top reasons why cavities form on the smiles of children:
• Poor dental hygiene habits – without the help of a parent, many children do not thoroughly clean their teeth with brushing, let alone flossing if taught. It is important that parents help their children brush their teeth, and ensure they are reaching all the areas of the mouth when doing so.
• Poor nutrition – diets high in sugars can increase the amount of acid that develops in the mouth and leads to the development of dental caries. Even infants are exposed to sugar through formula and juices. By eliminating these items from a child’s diet, not only will they lead a healthier lifestyle, but they will have less issues with their smile!
• “Bottle rot” – cavities can also occur in the baby teeth of infants through what is often referred to as “bottle rot.” When parents have babies lay down for naptime or bedtime with a bottle of milk, formula, or juice, they are putting their baby at risk of developing cavities. Instead, parents should give their baby a bottle of water for bed, and should wipe the teeth and gums with a wet washcloth after every bottle to keep their baby teeth clean and healthy!
• Pacifier use/thumb sucking – not only can these activities contribute to poor alignment of the teeth, but this poor alignment and overcrowding can make it even more difficult for children to properly clean their teeth, leading to cavities and even periodontal disease. Parents should make sure that these habits are weaned around the age of one year of age to maintain proper dental health.
Educate yourself further on the benefits of proper oral health care for children
If you are interested in learning more about how to help your children care for their smiles, we welcome you to book an appointment with our team at Montefiore Medical Center. Call (888) 700-6623 to book an appointment at any one of our eleven convenient locations in the community.