Baby bottle tooth decay is sometimes referred to as “Milk Bottle Caries” by dentist.  This can become a problem for children under the age of five and can be avoided through awareness and prevention.  The dentist can provide treatment for milk bottle caries as well as educate the parent on proper oral hygiene care.  The earlier the problem is addressed, the less extensive and invasive the treatment will be.

Signs to Recognize Baby Bottle Tooth Decay

• White chalky soft spots seen near the gum line of the front teeth.

• Brown or Black spots on the front teeth and or in the grooves of the back teeth.

• Bleeding or swollen gums that may be reddened in color.

• Bad breath constantly.

• Fever or irritability which can be an indication of an infection.

Treatment Options

• Fluoride or Varnish may be placed on teeth in the early stages for remineralization.

• Reduce the amounts of juices and acidic foods in diet.

• Stainless steel crowns may be needed if the decay is extensive.

• Severe decay may require extractions where the baby teeth are not restorable.

The best approach to baby bottle tooth decay is prevention. Do not let your child sleep with a bottle of milk or juice at night and if you think you see a cavity, take your child to the dentist so they can give you the best treatment options. 

I hope this Tooth Talk helps parents and if you have questions call or email me at Integrity Dental Care, PLLC (615) 445-8700 or email with any questions you may have.