Preventing Childhood Tooth Decay

Smile Gary INMost Americans are quite aware of how tooth decay works, at least as a concept. Practical application is usually where the breakdown in oral hygiene occurs. People know in their mind that ignoring flossing will not be beneficial to their oral health. But when it’s just that one time, you swear. The problem is that these habits build up over time, and this wear can be serious.

But we rarely think about how the development of tooth decay in children can be a problem beyond the years with those infant ones. This set creates a pathway for the growth of an adult set of teeth. Properly maintaining a child’s oral health can play a huge role in avoiding significant orthodontic procedures in the future, particularly their teen years. Today, your Gary, IN dentist talks about how tooth decay can be harmful to your baby’s smile, and some ways to avoid long-term harm!

Building An Oral Health Foundation

Many issues that can arise through your child’s oral health are simply overlooked. This is not to say that anyone is intentionally neglecting it, but we are trained to view childhood as very impermanent. But your adult teeth are not a backup set, and childhood development plays a large role in their healthy growth.

Baby bottle tooth decay is often seen as brown splotchy areas on your child’s enamel. If this will not wipe off, it is not likely just remnants of leftover milk. Take this as a sign that you need to be more cautious with their health, and speak with your dentist as soon as you can. This can lead to mouth pain in children, so truly, waiting can do serious harm.

You’re Their Protector

Babies simply do not have full control of their bodies. Just like they need to wear a diaper, you need to be helping their mouths. They cannot swallow or close their mouth with the same dexterity that an adult can, so you have to aid them a bit. Make sure that you wipe their mouth down after feeding.

And do not leave them with a bottle in the crib! This can leave carbohydrates on their enamel for hours, doing damage. Avoid the use of any form of sweetener onto a bottle nipple or a pacifier, this can cause both immediate and lasting damage. Studies have shown that this can cause lasting eating problems, even into adulthood!


As a native of northwest Indiana, Nicholas Cain, DDS, is dedicated to providing excellent general, preventive, and family dentistry services to the community that raised him, welcoming patients from Gary, Miller, Miller Beach, and all surrounding areas. To schedule your appointment, call Healthy Smiles in Gary, IN, today at 219-938-2637. You can also email our office at