10 Home Remedies for Tooth Decay and Cavities in Children
16 April 2015
10 Home Remedies for Tooth Decay and Cavities in Children
8 mins read
for Moms, New Born, Baby, Toddlers, Pre-schoolers, Pre-teen
These home remedies for tooth decay in children will ensure that your child's teeth look good and remain healthy. Natural remedies for tooth decay can also save you an expensive trip to the dentist. Just dig into your kitchen ingredients and whip up a remedy that prevents your children from falling prey to tooth decay.
Tooth Decay and Cavities in Kids - Why Is it Common?
Tooth decay is a common problem which affects adults as well as children. As per the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, 42 percent of children between 2 and 11 years of age, develop dental caries (cavities) in their primary teeth.
Tooth decay and cavities are more common in kids because of their unhealthy choices. The most common cause of tooth decay is children going to bed with a bottle - this is known as baby bottle tooth decay. Kids drinking from a bottle don’t generally rinse their mouth or brush their teeth. The milk sits in your baby’s mouth and becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. Dental hygiene is mostly ignored in younger age, which results in tooth decay or cavities in kids.
Another reason that plays a large part in tooth decay in kids is unhealthy food choices. It's not uncommon to find children addicted to eating sugary stuff, like ice creams, candies, and chocolates, which increases the chances of tooth decay. Unhealthy eating habits and lack of hygiene are the prominent causes. Also, child’s tooth enamel is 50% thinner than that of adults, hence it is more prone to damage.
WATCH: Tooth Decay Causes and Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
Know what causes tooth decay in children and what can you do to prevent it:
Bacteria causes tooth decay and babies can catch bacteria from their surroundings.
Tooth decay can start as soon as the first teeth appear.
If a baby’s teeth are in contact with sugary liquids, like juice or formula, for a long time, it can cause tooth decay.
When a baby’s teeth are in contact with breastmilk for long, it causes tooth decay, which is known as baby bottle tooth decay.
Never put your baby to sleep with a bottle in his mouth.
Once your baby’s teeth appear, brush his teeth gently twice a day.
Signs of Tooth Decay
Symptoms of tooth decay are not hard to notice in children. If your child is consuming lollipops, chocolates, and beverages such as soft drinks and aerated juices then from a very early age his teeth will bear the brunt. Signs of tooth decay are visible and you won’t have a problem identifying it. But watch for these signs:
White spots on teeth is the earliest sign of tooth decay in children. These spots are usually near the gum area and may appear pale.
Black or brown spots on tooth enamel can also be present.
Experiencing pain while eating, biting, or chewing something.
Swollen and red gums.
Home Remedies for Tooth Decay in Children
Children love sweets. However, if this love is unregulated, chances are that a trip to the dentist may be on the horizon. Sugary foods need to be smartly integrated with your child's diet, lest oral problems crop up. However, as a mom, there are a few home-tested remedies that you can put to use to avoid damage. There are various ways to know and learn about how you can keep your munchkin's ivories shining bright.
The biggest culprit that causes tooth decay in children is sugar. So, the first step would be to ensure that your kid is kept away from consuming obscene quantities of sugar products. You might come across as the ‘bad cop’ in the equation, but you will be doing your kid a big favour. Sugar can quite literally decalcify or demineralise the tooth’s structure. No kidding! One of the best home remedies to avoid cavities in children would be to use raw honey and maple syrup as substitutes to sugar. This diet change will also prevent your child from putting on weight and ruining his teeth.
Cod Liver Oil:
One of the natural remedies for tooth decay in children would have to be cod liver oil (rich in vitamins A & D). Of course, do not expect this to go down well with your kid. The unpleasant taste could be a bone of contention. But, we have a cheat sheet. You could mix a little of the cod liver oil with a glass of milk in the morning. Alternatively, go for high vitamin butter oil (for vitamin K) and add it to milk every day.
Turmeric is a proven Ayurvedic treatment for cavities. It's anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties are the perfect remedies for tooth decay. Every morning, apply a tiny pinch of turmeric powder on the affected tooth. You will need to persuade your kid to keep it there for a few minutes before asking him to rinse it with warm water.
The toothpaste your child uses could also cause dental cavities. A natural way to prevent cavities and tooth decay would be to do a little experiment and create your own toothpaste. Don't be surprised. All you need is a mixture of cinnamon and clove and a drop of water. Viola! Your organic toothpaste is ready! Brushing your kid’s teeth with this home-made toothpaste will keep his gums and teeth strong. An organic toothpaste is the perfect home remedy to get rid of cavities naturally.
A tried and tested remedy to get rid of tooth cavities is salt-water gargle. Not only does it scare the germs away, but also keep your kid’s mouth smelling fresh. Make it a point to instruct your child to gargle at least twice a day for good measure. You could always treat him to a lollipop at the end of the week. We all have our cheat days after all.
Liquorice, known as mulethi in India, is a natural remedy for tooth pain. Liquorice root is known to keep teeth healthy. The two compounds in liquorice, namely licoricidin and licorisoflavan A, have anti-bacterial properties. These compounds stop the growth of cavity-causing bacteria. Make your child brush his teeth with dried liquorice powder every day. Even a liquorice stick can be used to brush teeth, but kids won’t like it so let them stick to liquorice powder.
Cloves can cure all kinds of dental problems and it is a natural remedy for cavities. Cloves because of their anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and analgesic properties help reduce tooth pain and prevent cavities from spreading. You can use clove oil to get rid of cavities at home. Mix 1/4 teaspoon of sesame seed oil with 2-3 drops of clove oil. Take a few drops of this mixture on a cotton ball and gently dab it on the affected area. Note: Clove oil should not be used without diluting.
Similar to clove oil, cinnamon oil also proves effective in alleviating tooth pain. This oil also kills cavity-causing bacteria. Cinnamon oil is also strong, so dilute it before using. It can be used as a natural mouth rinse, all you have to do is mix some water to it. Ask your child to rinse mouth with this water and oil solution.
Garlic too is full of antibacterial and antibiotic properties. Garlic makes gums healthy and reduces tooth pain. Eating raw garlic also promotes healthy teeth but kids obviously won’t like it. You can even rub garlic oil on the affected teeth of your child to provide relief from pain due to the cavity. Other than this you can also make a paste by crushing 3-4 garlic cloves and adding a quarter teaspoon of rock salt to it. This paste can be applied on the tooth and ask your child to rinse his mouth after 10 minutes.
Green tea too is good for teeth problems. Green tea is a rich source of antioxidants.The anti-inflammatory properties of green tea prevent gum disease from occurring. It also prevents tooth decay and bad breath.
Make efforts to gently teach your child about the ill effects of sugar on their teeth. While educating your child is important, dietary restrictions and a good oral hygiene are pre-requisites for healthy teeth. There is also no denying the impact simple home-remedies can have, too. So, get set to follow these natural remedies for tooth decay in children, and look less worried each time your child asks for an ice-cream or a fizzy drink.