Teeth are suuuuuuper important to me so I pay careful attention to mine and Peyton’s. She has her first four teeth already and we are anxiously awaiting her next four teeth, which are beginning to peek out.
Now, I’ve noticed that they aren’t as white as I would like anymore so I began researching how to properly care for my baby’s teeth.
One of the first things that I stopped doing was to give her a bottle of formula during the night. Letting baby sleep with a bottle of formula to suck on throughout the night may keep them calm and asleep, but it isn’t the best idea for two reasons.
1. Baby formula, especially if you use oatmeal or cereal to thicken it like I do, is heavy. It’s similar to an adult waiting until right before he or she goes to bed and eating a large spaghetti dinner. It’s filling and heavy on your stomach. Furthermore, when we sleep the body goes into “sleep mode” and begins processing things much more slowly causing all that food to just sit while waiting to be digested.
2. Letting babies suck on a bottle of formula while they’re sleeping is not good for the teeth. The milk is allowed to pool in their mouth, which can lead to tooth decay. I have also spoken to mothers who their babies to suck on juice in their sleep…this is even worse. Just think about it, if you let sugary liquids or even liquids (other than water) sit on your teeth all night eventually you’d see the harmful effects. The same is true with your baby.
Because Peyton will fully wake up if she doesn’t have her bottle to suck on either because she needs soothing or because she’s hungry is fill her bottle with either water or green tea. I’ve found that she’s completely satisfied with either and sleeps like a baby (ha!) without the tooth decay all night.
This combined with using a finger cot (can be found on baby aisle in your local store. I use one by Orajel) and baby paste to keep her teeth nice and clean.