My 18-month-old son is on a sugar-restricted diet but has decaying teeth. Is it reversible or manageable?

Q. How to reverse or manage tooth decay in infants and toddlers?

Answered by
Dr. Anjana. G.
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Feb 23, 2023

Hello doctor,

My 18-month-old son's teeth are decaying. First, the front (upper) four decayed, and now the sides have started decaying. He has a restricted sugary diet and has not been breastfed for the last seven to eight months; however, he is on breastfeeding now. Please suggest if the decay is reversible or at least manageable.



Welcome to

I read your query and can understand your concern.

As per the image (attachment removed to protect the patient's identity), your baby has rampant caries, which is nothing but a borrowing type of dental cavity that occurs due to various factors. Initial treatment includes temporary fillings. If your baby has no pain and cooperates with the procedures, you can have permanent fillings on his teeth. Then you have to manage his diet. However, if he has pain, you must go for a pulpectomy (root canal treatment in the primary tooth).

Hope this helps.

Thanks and take care.

The Probable causes:

1. Genetic.

2. Habits like a sweetened pacifier and feeding bottle use at night.

3. Nutritional deficiencies.

4. Snacking in between meals and a sucrose-containing diet.

Differential diagnosis:

Dentinogenesis imperfecta.

Probable diagnosis:

Rampant caries.

Treatment plan:

1 Filling.

2. Managing the diet.

3. Professional and home fluoride therapy.

Preventive measures:

Using fluoridated toothpaste and advised brushing teeth in a circular motion.

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