Water that is fluoridated at a level optimal for oral health (as is used in Austin) poses no known health risks for infants. However, some children may develop enamel fluorosis, a cosmetic condition where faint white markings or streaks may appear on the teeth. Fluorosis can affect both baby teeth and permanent teeth while they're forming under the gums.
If you're concerned about fluorosis, you can minimize your baby's exposure to fluoride in several ways. Breastfeeding is the best source of nutrition for infants. If breastfeeding is not possible, you can minimize exposure to fluoride by using ready-to-feed formula. You can also alternate using tap water and non-fluoridated water for formula preparation or mix powdered or liquid infant formula concentrate with low-fluoride water most or all of the time. However, if you use only non-fluoridated water--such as purified, de-mineralized, de-ionized, or distilled bottle water--to prepare your baby's formula, your baby's doctor may recommend fluoride supplements beginning at age six months.
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