A child's first set of primary and adult teeth are usually perfect and white when they first come in, but many different factors can affect the health of a child's new teeth. Different factors can come into play, affecting their teeth even before they are born or as they grow into an adolescent. Here are three reasons your child can have dental problems when they are young.
Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome
According to a report in a 2006 general dentistry journal, cyclic vomiting syndrome (CVS) is recurrent episodes of nausea and vomiting that are not caused by any specific disease. These episodes happen between periods of otherwise normal health in a child and will usually stop when they reach adolescence.
Because this condition can last anywhere from two to six years, the stomach acids from vomiting can cause damage to your child's teeth. In addition to causing tooth erosion, it can make their teeth sensitive, cause gum disease, and cause trauma to the oral tissue in their mouth.
If you notice your child has periodic nausea and vomiting along with gastrointestinal issues, you may need to have their doctor check them for this syndrome. Be on the lookout for other symptoms, such as extreme tiredness, headaches, sensitivity to light and sound, and ulcers in their mouth. As CVS continues, the results from vomiting can permanently damage your child's teeth.
Your Child Was Born Prematurely
There are many negative outcomes when your baby is born prematurely. One issue includes problems with your preemie's primary teeth as they grow in. Seventy percent of babies who are born before their due date and below 7.2 pounds will have enamel hypoplasia when their teeth come in.
Enamel hypoplasia occurs when there is a lack of enamel on the outside of a child's teeth. It causes their teeth to be brownish in color, less smooth, and to be soft, which makes them more prone to breaking, chipping, and decay. Unfortunately, there is no way to stop enamel hypoplasia in your child's teeth.
By being born prematurely, your child's primary teeth may also come in later than normal. This also can cause their permanent teeth to come in later.
It is important that you take your child to their dentist every six months for checkups as they will be more prone to cavities. It is also important that you brush their teeth after meals to help keep them clean.
Bottle Tooth Decay
As your baby's parent, it is your responsibility to maintain good oral health for your baby as soon as possible. It is recommended that you take your baby in for a dental checkup six months after their first tooth comes in. As soon as your baby has teeth, they are susceptible to getting plaque and tartar which can lead to tooth decay. During a visit to their pediatric dentist, their dentist can give you tips for caring for their new teeth.
It is a good idea to wipe down your baby's teeth with a wet cloth after feeding them from a bottle. This is an easy way to help keep your baby's teeth free of tooth decay by cleaning off any residue from their teeth after each feeding. Also, avoid giving your baby a bottle to drink at bedtime. The liquid in the bottle can remain around their teeth as they sleep, causing decay.
As soon as your baby's teeth come in, you can use a soft baby toothbrush with a pea-sized amount of non-fluoride toothpaste. When your child is two years old you can begin to use fluoride toothpaste in a pea-sized amount on their toothbrush. It is important that your child keeps their primary teeth as long as possible because these teeth help align their permanent teeth as they come in.
Be aware of these three causes of early dental problems in your child and go to websites so you can help them take care of their teeth.