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Bradford babies ‘bin the bottle’ for better dental health

16 January 2023

This January, parents and carers of toddlers aged one and over across Bradford and Airedale are being invited to bin their baby bottles as part of a bid to improve the oral health of babies and young children.

Launching on 16 January, the aim of the campaign is to raise awareness of the effects that bottles can have on a child’s dental health, and to encourage parents to attend one of numerous exchange points to collect a free oral health pack, which includes a free-flowing feeder cup to replace baby bottles.

The Community Dental Service from Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust has teamed up with Better Start Bradford to launch the ‘Bradford Babies Bin the Bottle’ campaign. Together, they have set up exchange points across the district for six weeks, from 16 January – 26 February, including Community Dental Clinics, Barkerend Family Hub and Holmewood Health Centre.

At each location, parents and carers will be able to collect a free toothbrush and toothpaste pack, as well as their free-flowing feeder cup. At some exchange locations, there will also be oral health improvement staff on-hand to offer expert advice and dentists to offer free dental checks for toddlers who come along with their parents.

Sharon Walker, Oral Health Improvement Lead at the Care Trust, explains why making the change is so important: “Ideally, and where possible, babies will be breastfed in the first years of their lives, but we know many will be using bottles instead of or alongside doing this.

“If you are using a bottle at all, once your child reaches the age of one you should try to encourage them to use a free-flowing feeder cup instead.

“Liquid flows much slower through a bottle meaning a baby’s teeth are in contact with the sugary substance for longer, which can increase the chance of tooth decay. Swapping to a cup will therefore reduce this risk. They don’t need to use a bottle at all if they are breastfed, they can move straight onto a cup.

“Although it might be hard at first and maybe a little messy, it will also help them to learn how to sip rather than suck and your baby will gradually learn how to drink from an open cup.”

We would love to see all parents and carers of little ones come along to one of our exchanges and bin their babies’ bottles, while finding out more about how to best look after their little ones’ teeth.

Gill Thornton, Head of Programme, Better Start Bradford said: “In Bradford, around two in every five children have tooth decay by the age of five, so it is vitally important that families are aware how they can support their babies and young children to maintain good oral health habits.”

‘Bin the Bottle’ is one very important key message out of many, and we are thrilled to be supporting Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust with this campaign in the new year.

For the full list of locations and dates for both manned stations and exchange points, visit the official Bin The Bottle webpage. You can also pick up a pledge card to make your commitment to swapping to a feeder cup!

Find locations and dates of manned stations and exchange points

For support with breastfeeding, please visit


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