Premature Loss of Baby Teeth Caused by Baby Bottle Tooth Decay

baby bottle tooth decayBaby bottle tooth decay, also known as bottle mouth, infant caries, and early childhood caries ECC describe the tooth decay experienced by infants and children below the age of 5 years.
Unknown to many parents, tooth decay is the most common long-term childhood disease affecting even babies and toddlers. Infant caries often occur mostly on incisors on the upper jaw, though it can affect any or all teeth. Tooth decay can start as soon as the baby’s teeth come in – at around the age of six months.
Causes of Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
Tooth decay is caused by acid-producing bacteria found in the oral cavity. At first, these bacteria may be transmitted from the parent’s mouth to the baby, like when sharing a spoon or cleansing a pacifier with their mouths.
However, the most prominent cause of early childhood caries is when the baby’s teeth come in contact with sweet, sugary foods and drinks, like soda, breast milk, infant formula, sweetened water, and fruit juices, for extended periods of time.
Basically, any sweet fluid that might be filled in a baby bottle can cause tooth decay, especially when given as a naptime or nighttime drink, because they stay in the mouth for very long, allowing bacteria in the mouth to feed on the sugar in the mouth and then emitting harmful that erode tooth enamel.
It can cause pain, making it hard to eat. And if left untreated, the caries can destroy the baby’s teeth and affect the child’s general health.
Why are Baby Teeth Important?
Some parents assume that the premature loss of baby teeth is normal, since they’re expected to give way for permanent teeth anyway. So, why worry when they come out a little earlier than scheduled?
•The first teeth help in the development of a child’s speech, eating, and facial appearance.
•Baby teeth hold space in the jaw for permanent teeth – they establish space in the mouth for permanent teeth, allowing adult teeth to grow and develop normally. Early or premature loss of the first teeth can cause remaining teeth to drift into the space, leading to crowding or crookedness when adult teeth appear, making them hard to clean.
•Decayed and crooked teeth can affect the child’s self-esteem.
•Healthy baby teeth are more likely to lead to healthy adult teeth, saving on the cost of orthodontic treatment in later years.
To prevent baby bottle tooth decay, you should never let your baby fall asleep with a bottle containing sugary fluids, and always clean and massage the teeth and gums after every cleaning. Use a clean, wet piece of cloth until the teeth emerge. Afterwards, use toothpaste with the correct amount of fluoride to protect the teeth from decay.

Latest Dental News: Pancreatic Cancer Risk Linked to Specific Mouth Bacteria

dental news pancreatic cancerIt’s always important to stay up to date with the latest news. We have you covered here at Mint Dentistry of Woodland Hills when it comes to important dental-related news.
In a recent study that was presented at the American Association for Cancer Research held in New Orleans, LA, researchers were able to pinpoint two specific mouth bacteria that are linked with the possibility of developing pancreatic cancer.
The Study Background
The research team compared mouth bacteria samples between two groups:
• 361 American men and women before developing pancreatic cancer.
• 371 similar individuals that did not develop the disease.
These groups were followed for roughly 10 years where any presence of cancer was closely noted. After monitoring both of these groups, the researchers found that those who contained two specific types of bacteria had a higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer than those whose mouths did not contain these bacteria.
The two bacteria in question are:
Porphyromonas gingivalis – this bacteria was linked to a 59% overall higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer.
Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans – this bacteria was linked to a 50% overall higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer.
The interesting part about these bacteria is that both types are known to be associated with gum disease or periodontitis.
What The Study Means
In order to fully understand what this study means, it’s important to have an understanding of what mouth bacteria actually is. We have millions of bacteria that exist within our mouths. There are many different types of bacteria strains as well.
One of the doctors involved with the study, Dr. Jiyoung Ahn, mentions:

“Our study offers the first direct evidence that specific changes in the microbial mix in the mouth – the oral microbiome – represent a likely risk factor for pancreatic cancer along with older age, male gender, smoking, African-American race, and a family history of the disease.”

Given the results of this study, we now have evidence to help in the diagnosis & prevention of pancreatic cancer simply based on a sample taken from your mouth to see whether or not these bacteria strains exist, which is great news!