Baby teeth are important to all the parents as tooth decay is the most common chronic infectious disease of childhood. If tooth decay is not prevented, it can be painful as well as costly to treat, leading to life-threatening infections. Tooth decay may also be called infant caries or nursing caries or baby bottle tooth decay.
Why Baby Teeth are Important?
Most children’s baby teeth known as primary teeth or milk teeth emerge in a certain order beginning from 6 to 10 months age. Many people are in false belief that baby teeth are not important as they are temporary. Baby teeth are necessary for chewing, speaking and smiling. Baby teeth may also serve as placeholders for the formation of adult teeth. Children with dental caries in their baby teeth are at much greater risk for cavities in their adult or permanent teeth. Hence, healthy dental habits should begin early to avoid tooth decay as soon as the first tooth comes in.
Tooth decay usually occurs when a child’s teeth is more frequently exposed to sweetened drinks, sugary liquids for long periods of time, usually through extended nursing on breast milk, formula milk or juice.
Signs of tooth decay in babies might first appear as white spots at the gum line on the upper front teeth. Discoloration of teeth is also a common sign of dental decay in babies. Parents need to careful in babies diet, Infants should not be given a sugary drink at nap as the flow of saliva decreases, allowing the sugary liquids to linger on the child’s teeth increasing the chances of cavities damaging baby’s teeth and overall oral health.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that dental caries is five times more common than asthma and seven times more common than hay fever in children. More than 40 percent of children have tooth decay before preschool. Treatment for baby bottle tooth decay is much the same as it is for adult tooth decay. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry states that stainless steel crowns are often used for follow-up treatments or tooth replacement.