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Breastfeeding is an intimate and personal experience with an infant, where a mother and her baby can bond, and is a healthy start to life. Studies show there are a plethora of benefits associated with breastfeeding, such as lowered incidences of breast and ovarian cancer and increased immunity.

Other benefits include a reduction in baby bottle tooth decay risk and less chance of developing open bites, crossbites, and overbites, along with an increased ability to fight infections, reduce asthma, ear infections, obesity in children, and even SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). With all these benefits, you may wonder, “Why the caution?” Nursing moms, while providing the best source of food, can directly affect their child’s dental health, resulting in an increase in dentist visits.

Breastfed babies can still develop cavities, because just like formula, breast milk contains sugar. Dr. Austin Bowden believes caring for your baby’s teeth is therefore important from the start. Here are some important ways to ensure both you and baby stay healthy while breastfeeding.

-If you need dental work that requires medication, contact Kids First Pediatric Dentistry or your personal physician, to check if it is safe for your baby.
-Take care of your own dental health. New moms are exhausted and may not brush or floss as well as they used to, which leads to more gum disease and cavities.
-Reduce cavities by not sharing saliva with your child, through cleaning a pacifier or feeding spoon.
-Dry mouth can put yourself at risk for cavities, so stay hydrated.
-Take care of your physical health, such as your sleep, diet, exercise habits, and mental health.

For more information on how important information nursing moms need to know for dental health, please contact the dentist, at 410-828-5699.