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Caring for your baby’s oral health

Tooth decay can occur as early as age 1, which is why we advise parents to start early with taking care of their baby’s oral health. Some advice for your baby's first year:

  • Even before your baby’s first tooth erupts, wipe their gums, mouth and tongue with a soft cloth or oral wipe, especially after nursing or feeding. This helps them get used to future teeth cleanings.

  • If you give your baby a bottle before going to sleep, use only water. Bottles containing sugary drinks, milk or formula put teeth at risk of a bacterial acid attack all night long.

  • Never dip a child’s pacifier in anything. Give your baby a firm rubber teething ring to help with teething discomfort.

  • Talk to your pediatrician or pediatric dentist about fluoride use and when to transition your baby to fluoride toothpaste.

  • Establish a dental home for your baby by their first birthday. Your dentist can provide useful information and guidance towards helping keep your child’s mouth healthy and cavity-free.

Starting early with good dental care helps your child avoid future tooth pain, infections, speech problems and other oral health issues. And that keeps babies smiling into adulthood.

Source: American Pediatric Dentists


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