February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, so here’s a look at an issue that comes up when your child’s teeth are still new: Sippy Cups. Believe it or not, they can have quite an impact on your child’s pearly whites. The American Dental Association recommends that you:
• Choose the cup with care. Many “no-spill” cups include a valve beneath the spout, which means your child has to suck – rather than learn to sip – to drink, defeating the cup’s purpose.
• Choose the drink with care. Don’t let your child constantly sip liquids with sugar, including milk and juice drinks, because this can promote tooth decay. Offer these drinks only at mealtime, when saliva production increases and rinses the teeth. Between meals, fill sippy cups with water only.
• Teach your child to always sit to sip. Toddlers are often unsteady on their feet. A fall while drinking from a training cup could seriously injure your child's mouth and teeth.
– Christina Elston