Spots on Baby Teeth
It might come as a surprise that white or brown spots can appear on your baby’s newly formed primary teeth. While it’s not uncommon to see these tiny marks on your baby’s smile, they shouldn’t be ignored. Implementing a proper oral care routine can prevent further spots from forming and pave the way for a healthier mouth as your child develops.
What Causes White Spots on Baby Teeth?
Tooth Decay & Cavities
Chalky white spots on the teeth around the gum line can be an early sign of tooth decay in children. If you notice the spots become brown or yellow, this may indicate ongoing decay stemming from poor dental care and habits. Tooth decay can not only discolor your baby’s teeth, but also damage the adult teeth under their gums.
From the moment your baby’s first tooth erupts, it’s susceptible to decay, caries, and discoloration. Sometimes called “baby bottle tooth decay,” these issues are caused by poor nutrition as well as unrestricted bottle and breast feeding. Feeding your child a balanced diet and teaching them to drink from a free-flow cup by age one can help curb the consumption of sugary liquids that contributes to tooth discoloration and decay.
Another possible culprit of white spots on baby teeth is fluorosis, the white staining that develops when children’s developing teeth are overexposed to fluoride via drinking water or oral care products such as toothpastes and rinses. While fluoride can help prevent cavities and tooth decay, too much may be problematic.
However, there’s a surprising silver lining to excess fluoride intake. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), experiencing fluorosis as a child can actually make your teeth better equipped to avoid future decay.
White spots on baby teeth could also be caused by calcification and adhesion of dental plaque on the teeth. Calcium deposits are caused by saliva, so pay attention if your child’s tooth discoloration is happening near the internal part of the lower incisors, where their salivary ducts come into the mouth. If this is the case, a dentist may suggest a professional cleaning to treat the affected area.
How to Fix White Spots on Teeth
White spots on baby teeth are a sign that it’s time to schedule an appointment with the family dentist to establish a healthy oral care routine for your growing child. Your dentist will be able to diagnose why the spots have formed and what can be done to correct any existing discoloration.
How to Prevent Future White Spots on Teeth