**Learning @ Logic** Is your child at risk of tooth decay?
Early childhood caries, also known as nursing bottle caries is severe tooth decay that affects baby teeth, commonly the upper four front teeth. It is the most common chronic illness in children and can have a profound impact on a child’s health and quality of life, such as: difficulty eating and sleeping, pain, speech development, poor self-esteem and social isolation.
The enamel on baby teeth is much thinner and softer than adult teeth, making them vulnerable to tooth decay. However, it is preventable. There are many factors for the development of tooth decay, but the most common cause is the prolonged exposure of the teeth to sugars from food and drinks, including milk. Mouth bacteria feed on these sugars to create an acidic environment that break down teeth. However, children are not born with the bacteria that cause tooth decay; it is passed on through caregivers sharing the same spoon or cleaning a pacifier in their mouth.
While it is impossible to completely get rid of the decay causing bacteria, it is possible to prevent such chronic illness by making sure a child is not put to bed with a bottle filled with formula, milk, juice or any other sugary liquid.
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