How Long Is Formula Good For After Baby Starts Drinking Dental Health Tips For Small Children – Causes and Treatment of Early Childhood Caries (ECC)

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Dental Health Tips For Small Children – Causes and Treatment of Early Childhood Caries (ECC)

For parents of children under the age of 1 who may not be aware of the very real threat to their children’s dental health such as ECC, this article focuses on explaining the nature of the condition and tips on how to combat early childhood cavities. By understanding its causes and implementing prompt treatments, you can help prevent painful cavities and keep your precious little ones’ smiles intact. Read on to learn how!

ECC is an acronym for a condition called Early Childhood Caries, which can occur in small amounts – yes, even at under 12 months of age! However, surveys conducted by national health authorities reveal the shocking facts that parents are not aware of common tooth decay problems in babies, which can have very serious consequences, such as a damaged tooth or long-term weakening of tooth development if left unchecked.

In fact, the AAPD (the leading body for children’s dentistry in the US, known as the Academy of Pediatric Dentistry) reports a percentage of even 90 for some populations that fall into the “Head Start” segment for ECC cases. They outline certain necessary precautions for parents of infants and toddlers to avoid the full debilitating effects of ECC. They are given below for your easy reading.

ECC causes and treatment

A common reason for the development of ECC is when a bottle-fed infant or toddler is used to drinking sweetened beverages before bed and falls asleep with a pacifier in his mouth. This can include juice, milk, or other sweetened baby drinks, all of which can lead to the transmission of caries from the nursing bottle to the baby, resulting in severe bottle syndrome.

Parents looking to protect their little ones should note that this is a fairly common pediatric dental health hazard that affects children 3 years of age and younger. Therefore, it is recommended to properly wean and drink from a cup after the age of 1, and to avoid drinking from bottles especially at night.

During the day, when the child sleeps for shorter periods and is mostly awake, the constant flow of saliva allows the acid build-up on the surface of the tooth or teeth to be washed away, but this is greatly reduced when the child is asleep, which is more likely at night.

The top four front teeth are most likely to show symptoms of ECC, distinguished by chalky white marks caused by the acids that descale them. Not only do they look unsightly, but if left unchecked, they can be very painful for the child and prevent the child’s mouth from developing adequate storage space for future permanent teeth.

To avoid the possibility of your child wearing braces and other dental problems such as infections, abscesses, etc., parents are advised to be vigilant that toddlers do not fall asleep with a bottle of milk, formula or sweet liquids in their mouths.

Cool water in a bottle can provide relief for a baby who cries excessively between sweet bottle feedings. Also, never give a small child a pacifier that has been dipped in sweetened products. Finally, if you notice red, swollen, or unusual marks in your child’s mouth, see a dentist right away.

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