As a parent, you want your children to be healthy, and that includes their teeth. Baby teeth may be replaced in a few short years by the permanent set, but they still require care to prevent decay and other more significant issues. Any untreated dental problems may affect their adult teeth if left untreated.
Perhaps you have noticed white spots on your child’s teeth and have wondered what causes them. In most cases those white spots are no cause for alarm, but they should be evaluated by a dentist to determine if treatment is needed. There are two main causes for white spots on baby teeth, overexposure to fluoride and tooth decay. Luckily, both of these conditions can be diagnosed and addressed to protect your young child’s dental health.
The Good News
Fluoride is one of the best ways to protect young teeth from cavities caused by the buildup of plaque, which is why it is added to water supplies in most areas. If your child drinks a lot of water, be happy that floride is being delivered via the water supply. White spots may develop on his or her teeth due to too much fluoride, a condition known as fluorosis. While it may be concerning, you should not worry too much. There is little risk that these white spots will affect the development of adult teeth; in fact, the exposure to fluoride may strengthen the enamel of adult teeth as well while they begin to form under the baby teeth. Check with your dentist to see if fluorosis has caused these white spots to appear. You may also want to make sure your child is not using too much toothpaste when brushing to limit the fluoride intake.
And the Not So Good News
The other main cause of white spots on your baby’s teeth is decay. Tooth decay can result from not enough brushing and flossing to remove bits of food. When bacteria has the opportunity to take hold, you may notice white spots near the gum line and other signs of tooth decay in toddlers, such as puffy gums and bad breath. A trip to the dentist for a cleaning and checkup, followed by a fluoride treatment, can take care of your child’s baby teeth to keep them healthy and prevent cavities or deeper infections.
Teach your child proper dental hygiene now to take care of teeth for a lifetime. Colgate Oral Care Center has lots of good tips to help you instill healthy habits at any age as well as more information on white spots on baby teeth and other dental concerns. This is just one of the signs of tooth decay in toddlers that you should keep an eye out for. Even the best pediatric dentist in Langhorne can’t force you to teach good dental hygiene at home. This often comes from patient persistence between the caregiver and the child.