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Thread: Do we need to brush after nursing?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    17

    Default Do we need to brush after nursing?

    DS just had 12 mth checkup. I like my doctor, but at this appointment, he recommended stopping bottle and nursing saying both are bad for baby's teeth. Instead, I now brush his teeth after nursing, and then lie him down for bed. And we are working to switch from bottle to cup for expressed breast milk and a bit of cows milk he gets. But just now (10:30 pm) DS woke up. I nursed him back to sleep. He was so drowsy (along with me), I skipped the teeth brushing. How diligent do I need to be?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    Hey there,
    When ds was 12mos we took him to a ped. dentist. I told her we were still bfing and she said everything looked good and we should be brushing teeth at least 1-2x/day (2x is better) but she did not specify always after bfing or anything like that. The concern is sugars that are found in formula but not in bm, I think, coupled with the fact that putting a baby to bed with a bottle keeps these sugars in contact with the teeth much longer than a bfing session. Anyway, here's a link that may help:
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/older-baby/tooth-decay.html
    HTH!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    Hey there,
    When ds was 12mos we took him to a ped. dentist. I told her we were still bfing and she said everything looked good and we should be brushing teeth at least 1-2x/day (2x is better) but she did not specify always after bfing or anything like that. The concern is sugars that are found in formula but not in bm, I think, coupled with the fact that putting a baby to bed with a bottle keeps these sugars in contact with the teeth much longer than a bfing session. Anyway, here's a link that may help:
    http://www.kellymom.com/bf/older-baby/tooth-decay.html
    HTH!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    oops, I don't know how that happened, sorry!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    425

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    I was always told that the concern was for those babies that were bottle fed and slept with a bottle in their mouths. They sugars from the formula can cause decay. I wouldn't worry too much. Just brush in am and pm and your lo should be fine. My first two had exceptional dental records. My son has never had a cavity and my daughter got her first when she was around 10! A tiny tiny one at that!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    1,551

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    It is my understanding that breastmilk alone on the teeth will not cause decay. Just make sure you brush last thing at night to get all the food particles off his teeth. Formula can cause decay because of the sugars, and also bottles enable liquid to pool and sit on the teeth, while breastmilk does not flow unless the child is actively sucking.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    329

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    I brush my daughter's teeth twice a day, once before bed, then once in the morning. At night, I nurse her to sleep, after she's brushed. I use a toothpaste that is suppose to contain the "same ingredients as what is found in breastmilk". S I figure my milk could only be good for her teeth! As a pp said, I think it is more important to remove solid food materials from baby's teeth. BM is natural and I can't believe it would cause problems. It's not like it pools in their mouths for the entire night.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    1,551

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    There's also this sticky post with more links:
    http://forums.llli.org/showthread.ph...ghlight=caries

    Mary

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Do we need to brush after nursing?

    nursing dental caries has caused my family and i lots of misery, although i don't believe that dental caries are caused by nursing, although my dentist, old dentist made me feel like a bad mother, when my oldest child developed dental caries a few months after her front upper teeth errupted. my daughter at 17 months had to go through dental procedures that I hope has not trumatized her for life. Now with my son, this dentist, told me that I should wipe his teeth after every nursing, well that is not very practical and I have not done it, so far his teeth are OK. I believe it is from an improper formation of the enamel on the teeth in utero and that gentics has something to do with it as well. Many in my fathers family have had dentures at an early age, 20's. my sister's son who slept all night at 4 months old, also had dental caries. So dentist cannot blame his caries on nursing all night. Oh yea, my daughter nursed all night until about 15 or 17 months. My son still nurses at night, although he has never nursted as much at night as my daughter did. I do brush his teeth, and check them regularly. I was the one who noticed the changes in my daughters teeth first, so I know what it looks like when it starts. Good luck, I have talked to other mothers both breast and bottle moms who have had this problem, it is not fun to go through.

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