Does a Baby Bottle Affect Speech?
A speech delay can impact a child's communication with family members and the public alike. Can baby bottles be the cause?
Whether your baby is fed breast milk through a bottle or exclusively on formula, you want to make sure that the bottle you choose does not impact their speech development. However, the concern is not so much with the nipple, but the impact of its contents.
Dental Problems from Baby Bottles Can Affect Speech
When your baby is ready for a nap or bedtime, you are likely to feed them to help them sleep. It is important to remember not to let them sleep with the bottle in the crib. Not only can this be a choking hazard, but it can also lead to dental problems. When a baby falls asleep while eating, there is a residual amount of formula that can harbor bacteria. This bacteria can wind up developing into tooth decay. Tooth decay can continue for years, especially if your baby is not seen by a dentist or pediatric dentist after they turn one year old. In some cases, it is the pain or loss of teeth along with working the tongue can affect speech.
After you feed your baby, be sure to wipe their gums with a damp washcloth or baby toothbrush that fits on your finger. Also, do not put anything that is not formula in their bottle. While you may give them juice when they are older, it is not something they should have before they go to bed or even fall asleep in their car seat or stroller.