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Does sleeping with a bottle cause tooth decay?
Q: What can I do to prevent my baby from getting tooth decay when she drinks from her bottle? She insists on having a bottle to fall asleep with. I'm wondering if this is a bad practice since she doesn't have many teeth yet.
A: It's best not to let your baby fall asleep with a bottle in her mouth. This can cause a large amount of decay. Due to her young age, she may not be able to be treated in an office setting, and she could require surgery.

You can reduce the amount of damage by cleaning her teeth after each feeding using a small, soft toothbrush with water, or wiping her teeth after each bottle with a damp face cloth. The best solution is not to let her sleep with a bottle unless it contains plain water.

Gregory F. George D.D.S.