Prolonged Baby Bottle Feeding: A Health Risk Factor

Gaffney, Kathleen F.; Farrar-Simpson, Margie A.; Claure, Delicia; Davilla, Gloria
May 2004
Pediatric Nursing;May/Jun2004, Vol. 30 Issue 3, p242
Academic Journal
The article discusses problems associated with prolonged baby bottle feeding. Research on prolonged baby bottle use yielded several studies that confirmed a significant association between prolonged bottle feeding and/or bottle feeding at sleep time and the incidence of Baby Bottle Tooth Decay. An Irish study of 5 year old children found that the presence of caries was significantly related to a history of taking a bottle to bed. An Australian study of 3,375, 4 to 6 year old children found that the presence of early childhood caries (the presence of cades on at least one primary tooth in children under 6 years of age) was significantly associated with past infant feeding practices, including both sweetened bottle contents and going to sleep with the bottle. In the U.S., a study of 120 Hispanic families supported the findings of these international studies. In this research, the practice of going to sleep with the bottle was found to be significantly associated with early childhood caries. Further studies demonstrate additional pediatric morbidities associated with prolonged bottle use. A few studies warn that prolonged bottle use increases the risks associated with iron deficiency anemia and obesity.


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