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Thread: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on BM

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Default Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on BM

    Hi everyone.

    MY DD who is 14 months has 2 cavities. Dont know what happened to her teeth but her dentist is blaming it on night bfeeding. With her tooth we will have to have it removed because it is so bad and my husband wants me to start weening. The dentist said the sugars from the bm sit on the teeth at night and the bacteria thrives causing cavities on the back of her teeth, and they see this alot in bfed babies.


    Some history: baby is bfeeding 2 times a day and at night before bed. She also bf at night maybe 3 times. She eats solids but only healthy and there is minimal sugars or salts in her food. Maybe the occasional bit is offered. She has had very diluted juice in a cup but not everyday.

    Question: is my bmilk causing this? and if not please can you explain to me why the sugars are not doing this... so i can understand..also i would hate it if it was because of me that this happened.

    2. has anyone had experience of this ? what did you do... is there any way to deal with this without weaning?

    3. is brushing with xylitol toothpaste something that i could use use for future? to help stop the decaying on any other teeth?

    any advice would be appreciated, i am so lost right now and so upset about what will have to happen with her tooth.

    thank you,

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    I'm so sorry. Where are the cavities located? Do you brush her teeth before bed?

    I don't think that breastfeeding caused this, some people just have weaker enamel.
    http://kellymom.com/ages/older-infant/tooth-decay/
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    Sorry about th cavities, mama! This article explains why breastmilk is unlikely to be to blame: http://kellymom.com/ages/older-infant/tooth-decay/

    I highly doubt that your dentist "sees this a lot with breastfed babies"- or at least, I highly doubt that the prevalence of cavities is increased with breastfed vs. bottle fed babies.

    You can definitely start brushing your LO's teeth, or at least wiping them down with a clean washcloth a few times a day. And since the easiest part of the puzzle to remove is the juice, I'd cut out even the dilute stuff.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    I just read your original post a little more clearly. It sounds like the cavities may be on the back of your baby's teeth? My dentist told me that what can happen with babies this age (my 2nd is the same age as your baby) is that there is a pocket between the back of the tooth and the gums. Once they are eating solid foods, bits of food can get stuck in there so to be sure to brush them every night. He said that's why parents don't sometimes notice - the front of the tooth looks perfect but the back does not. It is NOT the breastmilk or the breastfeeding.

    However, we didn't brush Lilah's teeth at all until she was probably closer to 18 months old and she nursed all night every night until she was around 20 months old. With Beatrix, we have been brushing her teeth since she was around 9ish months old every night because Lilah's teeth get brushed every night and it's part of our routine. Neither of my girls have had cavities.
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*mommy2lilah View Post
    I'm so sorry. Where are the cavities located? Do you brush her teeth before bed?

    I don't think that breastfeeding caused this, some people just have weaker enamel.
    http://kellymom.com/ages/older-infant/tooth-decay/
    Hi. Cavities are the top two point teeth on the left and right side no, i have just started brushing.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    Don't blame yourself mama. Has the dentist mentioned any treatment for the teeth that are remaining to help inhibit cavities?
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    Can you get a second opinion to find out if you really need to pull the tooth?
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    Yes we got a second opinion, but the tooth is so short and its all brown. They said they would try and put a crown on it but because there is hardly any tooth anything that grows would probably be bad too. i feel terrible. I was reading about ECC that it would probably be caused by that and not breastmilk.. Just need to find out how i can keep her other teeth healthy..

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    Did the dentist discuss the possibility of an enamel defect on your LO's teeth? That happened to a friend of mine- her son had the weakest, most pitted enamel on his teeth. It was just a developmental quirk. He needed caps on all his front teeth before he was even 2.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Need Help/Advice - DD has cavities and dentist blames on

    The dentist said the sugars from the bm sit on the teeth at night and the bacteria thrives causing cavities on the back of her teeth, and they see this alot in bfed babies.
    This is NOT what is said by the AAP or the ADA on this subject. The journal Pediatrics published a study that found NO LINK between duration of nursing and cavities, and the ADA has the article about this study on their website. Plus if this dentist sees "lots" of babies who nurse up to or past a year, with or without cavities, I would dearly love to know where you live because someone is doing something right around there with encouraging normal breastfeeding duration.

    There is a very good discussion of this issue in the 2010 edition of The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding. It's important to look at up to date resources (much of what is online is NOT up to date) as the data that night nursing is not to blame and shows night weaning is not needed or helpful in these situations is pretty new. If you don't want to buy the book check with your local LLL or your local library or just go to the bookstore and read the info. Just look up cavities in the index.

    There is NO EVIDENCE that breastfeeding at night or any other time causes cavities. A child will be cavity prone due to genetics, nutritional issues that occur when baby is in the womb, and the babies mouth being colonized by "bad' bacteria rather than 'good' bacteria. To try to prevent/lessen the effects of tooth decay, practice good dental hygine (brushing or wiping teeth twice a day, there is no proof that wiping babies teeth down after every nursing session does anything) and avoiding the types of foods that are more apt to cause cavities (sticky and/or sugary.) And yes it is my understanding xylitol may help, that is mentioned in the WAB, but I don't have the book with me right now to see exactly what it says.
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; April 6th, 2012 at 01:10 AM.

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