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Everyone wants what is best for their baby, and rightly so. When it comes to your baby’s health, it is best to be well-informed regarding healthy and effective care, which also includes preventive dental care.

As such, The Houston Dentists are here to present facts and details critical to your baby’s dental care as he or she gets older.

Caring for your baby’s dental care at an early age

If you’ve recently gave birth to a baby boy or a baby girl, you have come to the right place to get informed regarding the oral health of your baby.

Even though he or she does not have teeth yet, you must understand the impact of bacteria (that is present in their saliva) and its link to early childhood caries (ECC).

  • Actually, a recent study conducted at the University of Illinois confirms this specific linkage, which is critical to safe and responsible baby care.
  • It is very important to start caring for your child’s oral care at an early age to prevent future cavities.

What is early childhood caries (ECC)?

Do you know that, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, cavities are the most common disease affecting children throughout the United States? Well, ECC is commonly known as tooth decay, or a cavity, formed by many different types of bacteria contained in saliva. Actually, researchers from the University of Illinois learned that infant’s saliva has many diverse forms of bacteria, which presents the need for further research into infant oral bacteria and its critical link to childhood ECC.

This study’s lead researcher, Kelly Swanson, concluded that 40 percent of children have dental cavities by the time he or she reaches kindergarten. That’s an alarming statistic. Even more astounding is the fact that, those populations in a low socioeconomic class, whose mothers have minimal education, and who consume a high
sugar diet are 32 times more likely to contract the ECC disease.

  • One reason why this study is so unique is because it focused on infants before their teeth erupted, whereas most studies on ECC focus on kindergarten- and preschool-age children. What most parents don’t realize is the fact that once kids reach these ages, many already have cavities.
  • They also concluded that the “window of infectivity” occurs at a much younger age than originally suspected, which means babies younger than 19 to 33 months of age are susceptible to ECC.

How to care for your child’s oral care

Now that you know some important statistics and facts about ECC (childhood cavities), you might be wondering how to prevent cavities from forming. Well, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, it is recommended to:

  • Minimize snacks and drinks that have a high level of sugar content and fermentable sugars
  • If your baby does not have teeth yet, wipe his or her gums

These child oral care tips help to prevent future cavities for your son or daughter.

Find out more about your child’s oral hygiene habits

Here at The Houston Dentists, we do not want you and your family to be part of the alarming statistics aforementioned. Dr. Frazar and Dr. Hedge care about their patients, first and foremost, and they love creating healthy, beautiful smiles on a daily basis.