It’s Never Too Early to Prevent Cavities

It’s Never Too Early to Prevent Cavities

Winnipeg Childrens Dentist Dr. M.B VodreyDental problems such as cavities (also known as dental caries) can have a major impact on children. Pain and the effect on their appearance may not only leave children feeling bad but can also result in a lifelong fear of dentists. This leaves many parents wondering just how and when to start preventing cavities.

A recent study has shed some light on a factor you may not have considered: how you feed your child. While many parents may think cavity prevention starts only when their child has his or her first tooth, what and how you feed your baby appears to play a crucial role. Certain feeding practices can lead to severe early childhood caries. When that occurs, your child can suffer from

  • pain
  • chewing problems
  • speech difficulties
  • poor self-esteem

On top of that, it can be costly to treat severe early childhood caries. Just as your eating habits affect your likelihood of developing cavities, so too do your child’s feeding practices. Children who are breastfed seven or more times a day after they are 12 months old are thought to have a higher incidence of cavities.

Another risky behavior is using a bottle for liquids other than milk. The number of meals and snacks can similarly put your child at a higher risk for cavities.

When it comes to feeding, what you do today can have consequences later for your child. We have information on how you can help prevent cavities in your child. Simple measures such as avoiding or reducing the consumption of foods high in sugar can help. Appropriate intervals between feedings can also make a difference.

Research shows it is critically important that you receive advice before your child transitions from an exclusive milk diet to solid foods.

 

Dr M.B. Vodrey is a Pediatric Dentist in Winnipeg Manitoba