Human milk vs formula milk- what is better for your child’s oral health

Breast milk is the optimal nutrition for infants until they reach six months of age. It is imperative to maintain breastfeeding until the mother experiences solace, irrespective of the number of solid foods introduced. The optimal composition of human milk provides neonates with antibodies that safeguard them against all diseases. Colostrum safeguards the gastrointestinal (GI) mucosa of infants. Additionally, the risk of ear and respiratory infections is diminished. Due to the easy emulsification of lipids in breast milk, breastfeeding reduces the risk of developing arterial disease.

In contrast, formula milk comprises an amalgamation of various preservatives, emulsifiers, enzymes, and amino acids added to skimmed bovine milk. These cannot be simple and are not natural sources of nutrition for infants. It does not furnish neonates with a natural defence mechanism against infections, in contrast to the protective effects of breast milk. Moreover, lactation strengthens the bond between mother and child and provides psychological benefits for both.

Breastfeeding has demonstrated advantages not only in terms of the overall systemic health of infants but also in the maintenance of excellent oral health. Tooth alignment and dental infections are the two most critical aspects of oral health that are impacted by the consumption of human milk.

The Alignment of Teeth

The impact of breastfeeding on facial muscles and mandible movements is direct. It promotes facial muscle development and aids in the expansion of the molars and jaw. When engaging in breast suckling, the tongue is positioned lower on the lower mandible, and milk is compressed via continuous suctioning motions involving the lips, jaw, and tongue. On the contrary, bottle-fed neonates exhibit passive movements during which they exert negative pressure against the nipple of the bottle via the tongue in order to extract the milk. Due to the continuous flow of milk, the oral muscles remain inactive, which hinders the development of the dentition, jaw, and oral structures. Additionally, bottle feeding may lead to issues such as congestion between teeth, misalignment of teeth, and disruption of palatal growth.

Dental Caries

Lactose constitutes the fundamental constituent of human milk. This lactose hinders the growth of Streptococcus mutans, an oral bacteria that is detrimental to dental health, and results in demineralization. Due to its inability to fully metabolise lactose sugar, Streptococcus mutans is incapable of causing dental caries. In addition, proteins and antibodies such as IgA and IgG found in human milk inhibit the proliferation of bacteria.

In contrast, formula milk contains sucrose, which increases the susceptibility of teeth to bacterial demineralization upon contact. Additionally, while bottle sucking, the nipple of the bottle contacts the pharynx, obstructing the flow of saliva to the upper incisor region. This obstruction increases the vulnerability of the incisors to dental caries. Nonetheless, it is advisable to maintain the cleanliness of infant teeth by wiping them down with moist gauze subsequent to consuming human milk.

Finally, it has been unequivocally demonstrated that breastfeeding benefits both the mother and the infant. Pregnant children are significantly happier and healthier.

Schedule an appointment with Focus Dental Clinic, the preeminent dental clinic in Naraina Vihar, Shalimar Bagh and Saket, for enhanced comprehension.

Visit Focus Dental in our locations in Naraina Vihar, Max Hospital, Saket and Max Hospital, Shalimar Bagh, for additional information on selecting the best dentist. To schedule an appointment, give 8929265020 a call today.

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