Q:

How do you prevent baby bottle tooth decay?

A:

Quick Answer

Prevent baby-bottle tooth decay by limiting the child's access to sweets in the bottle, practicing good oral hygiene and breaking bad habits. Protecting a baby's primary teeth is essential to good oral health for his lifetime.

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Full Answer

  1. Keep juice out of the bottle

    Bottles are only for breast milk, formula and water. If the child has diarrhea, it is acceptable to give him electrolyte drinks through a bottle. When training the child to use a sippy-cup, dilute juice with an equal amount of water to reduce sugar, but only use it in the cup, never the bottle.

  2. Practice good oral hygiene

    Before the baby has teeth, wipe his gums with a clean washcloth each time he eats. Once the first tooth breaks through the gums, use a toothbrush without toothpaste to clean it. Continue cleaning gums using the washcloth. Floss between teeth. Schedule a dental appointment before the child's first birthday.

  3. Break bad habits

    If you have already been giving the child sugary drinks through a bottle, break the habit. Begin by diluting the drink with an equal amount of water. After two weeks, only add water to the bottle. Never give the child a pacifier that has been dipped in anything sweet.

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