When feeding the baby, it is important that parents or caregivers of children make sure that the temperature of their food is adequate, to avoid any risk of burns. A very recurrent practice is blowing on baby food to cool it. However, and although it may seem strange, this is not recommended. Let's see the health risks that the baby can have to continue with this bad habit!
How many times, before giving the puree to your little one, have you made the gesture of blowing on the food? Or, at the expression of 'Mom, this burns a lot', you, instead of waiting for it to cool, have blown on it. All or almost all mothers have done it at some point in our life ... until now!
And it is that respiratory secretions, which are expelled into the air as microscopic drops of water, when we cough, sneeze, speak or blow, contain viruses and bacteria that can cause diseases that range from a simple cold to more serious conditions such as tuberculosis. Reason more than weight to stop doing this practice that becomes one of the main causes of disease transmission.
A disease little associated with this practice is cavities, especially related to babies, in what is called Early Childhood Caries, defined by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry as the presence of one or more decayed teeth, absent due to cavities or restored, in children up to 71 months of age.
It's normal that the bacteria called Streptococcus mutans are found in our oral cavity, that feeds on the remains of food that remain between the teeth, and is the main microorganism that causes cavities.
This bacterium can reach the child's oral cavity by vertical transmission from parents, caregivers or any other family member, associated with customs or habits such as kissing him on the mouth, blowing his food or trying it with the same spoon with which he go eat (studies have found the same serotype of this bacterium coinciding in the mother and the child).
According to the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry, the baby can develop cavities even before we see his teeth. If you come into contact with this bacteria, as soon as the tooth erupts, they begin to develop plaque and an acidic environment is created that will generate cavities (always based on food remains).
For these reasons, we must make some changes in what, until now, we have considered a simple 'normal' and everyday habit, which actually puts the health of the baby at risk. Try any of these tips to cool your food and avoid blowing it:
- Prepare your food in advance, so it takes its natural time to cool down. Do not exaggerate with this time either, since food should not remain in the so-called 'danger zone' for long, between 4 - 60ºC as it encourages the reproduction of bacteria.
- Place their food in a large container and shallow, to facilitate heat loss.
- Constantly stir the food, the air circulation will make it cool in no time.
- Put your plate on a tray with ice or cold water (cooking technique called inverted bain-marie)
- Use a large plate to cool your food, in a way that allows you to separate it into smaller portions within the same plate.
- If you want to try it, to ensure its flavor and temperature, use a different spoon or fork than the one the child will use to eat.
- Do not use the freezer or refrigerator to cool food faster, its heat can endanger other food that you have stored there
Additionally, you must maintain good oral hygiene, frequently cleaning his mouth and avoiding sharing the use of his utensils (especially spoons and forks). It is also very important that the entire family group attend their regular visits to the dentist, to enhance their respective check-ups and corrections in order to avoid vertical transmission of this bacterium.
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