Early Childhood Dental Caries and Protective Strategies

Author: Dogan Ozdemir1
1Rectorate, Tishk International University, Sulaymaniyah, Iraq

Abstract: Dental caries is the most common health problem of childhood caused by the bacteria, especially streptococcus mutant and sugary diet. So we should educate parents and caregivers about the causes of dental carries and how to protect their children from tooth decays. There are different causes of tooth caries such as the kind of nourishing food contents, oral hygiene, toothpaste contents, proper tooth brushing and daily tooth brushing. It is known that when the sugar containing food consumed in daily diet with the help of tooth decay bacteria as streptococcus the sugar is fermented and results in the formation of lactic acid. Finally, the pH of the environment decreases which will ends in the dental caries formation. The main idea of this review is to give a remarkable look at early childhood dental caries in terms daily nourishing, food contents, oral hygiene and its preventive ways with the help of parents and caregivers.

Keywords: Dental Caries, Nourishing Food and Tooth Brushing

Download the PDF Document

Doi: 10.23918/eajse.v8i1p161

Published: June 26, 2022


Abanto, J., Carvalho, T. S., Mendes, F. M., Wanderley, M. T., Bonecker, M., & Raggio D. P. (2011). Impact of oral diseases and disorders on oral health-related quality of life of preschool children. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 39(2), 105–114.

Adair, P., & Ashcroft, A. (2007). Theory-based approaches to the planning and evaluation of oral health education programmers. In: Pine CM, Harris R, editors. Community Oral Health. Berlin: Quintessence. pp. 307–31.

Almeida, C.M., Petersen, P.E., Andre, S.J., & Toscano, A. (2003). Changing oral health status of 6- and 12-year-old schoolchildren in Portugal. Community Dent Health, 20, 211–216.

American Pediatric Dentistry. (2001). Clinical guideline on periodicity of examination, preventive dental services, anticipatory guidance, and oral treatment for children. 13,102–108.

Bader, J.D., Shugars, D.A., & Bonito, A.J. (2001). Systematic reviews of selected dental caries diagnostic and management methods. J Dent Educ., 65, 960–968.

Berkowitz, R.J. (2003). Causes, treatment and prevention of early childhood caries: A microbiologic perspective. J Can Dent Assoc., 69 (5), 304–307.

Bratthall, D., Hansel-Petersson, G., & Sundberg, H. (1996). Reasons for the caries decline: What do the experts believe? Eur J Oral Sci. 104(4), 416–422.

Çolak, H., Dülgergil, Ç.T., Dalli, M., & Hamidi, M.M. (2013). Early childhood caries update: A review of causes, diagnoses, and treatments. J Nat Sc Biol Med, 4 (1), 29-38.

Curnow, M.M., Pine, C.M., Burnside, G., Nicholson, J.A., Chester, R.K., & Huntington, E. A. (2002). Randomized controlled trial of the efficacy of supervised tooth brushing in high-caries-risk children. Caries Res, 36, 294–300.

Da Franca, C., Colares, V., & Van Amerongen, E. (2011). Two-year evaluation of the atraumatic restorative treatment approach in primary molars class I and II restorations. Int J Paediatr Dent., 21, 249–253.

Dallı, M., Çolak, H., Mustafa, & Hamidi, M. (2012). Minimal intervention concept: A new paradigm for operative dentistry. J Investig Clin Dent, 3(3), 167-175.

Ercan, E., Bağlar, S., & Colak, H. (2010). Topical Fluoride Application Methods in Dentistry. Cumhuriyet Dent J., 13, 27–33.

Ercan, E., Dulgergil, C.T., Soyman, M., Dalli, M., & Yildirim, I. (2009). A field-trial of two restorative materials used with atraumatic restorative treatment in rural Turkey: 24-month results. J Appl Oral Sci. Journal of Applied Oral Science, 17(4), 307-314.

Featherstone, J.D. (2000). The science and practice of caries prevention. The Journal of American Dentist Association, 131(7), 887–899.

Featherstone JDB. (2004). The continuum of dental caries–evidence for a dynamic disease process. J Dent Res., 83(C), 39–42.

Gussy, M.G., Waters, E.G., Walsh, O., & Kilpatrick, N.M. (2006). Early childhood caries: Current evidence for aetiology and prevention. J Paediatr Child Health, 42(1-2), 37-43.

Hajishengallis, E., Parsaei, Y., Klein, M. I., & Koo, H. (2017). Advances in the microbial etiology and pathogenesis of early childhood caries. Cell Host & Microbe, 32(1), 24–34.

Ismail, A.I. (1998). Prevention of early childhood caries. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol. 26(1), 49-61.

J Dent Educ. (2001). Diagnosis and management of dental caries throughout life. National Institutes of Health Consensus Development Conference Statement, 65(10), 1162-8.

Jenkins, G.N. (1985). Recent changes in dental caries. Br Med J. 291(6505), 1297-1298.

Jones, S., Burt, B.A., Petersen, P.E., & Lennon, M.A. (2005). The effective use of fluorides in public health. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 83(9), 670-676.

Kelly, M., & Bruerd B. (1983). The prevalence of baby bottle tooth decay among two native American populations. J Public Health Dent, 47(2), 94-97.

Kindelan, S.A., Day, P., Nichol, R., Willmott, N., & Fayle, S.A. (2008). UK National Clinical Guidelines in Paediatric Dentistry: Stainless steel preformed crowns for primary

Klinke, T., Urban, M., Luck, C., Hannig, C., Kuhn, M., & Kramer, N. (2014). Changes in Candida spp., mutans streptococci and lactobacilli following treatment of early childhood caries: a 1-year follow-up. Caries Research. 48(1), 24–31.

Limeback, H., & Robinson, C. (2012). Comprehensive preventive dentistry. Hoboken, NY, USA: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Fluoride therapy; pp. 251–282.

Marinho, V. C., Worthington, H. V., Walsh, T., & Chong, L. Y. (2025). Fluoride gels for preventing dental caries in children and adolescents. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 6.

Marinho, V.C., Higgins, J.P., Sheiham, A., & Logan, S. (2004). Combinations of topical fluoride (toothpastes, mouthrinses, gels, varnishes) versus single topical fluoride for preventing dental caries in children and adolescents. Cochrane Database Syst Rev., (1), CD002781.

Marinho, V.C. (2008). Evidence-based effectiveness of topical fluorides. Adv Dent Res. 20(1), 3-7.

Marinho, V.C.C, Higgins, J.P.T., Logan, S., & Sheiham, A. (2003). Fluoride toothpastes for preventing dental caries in children and adolescents. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, (1).

Overton, D.A. (2005). Community oral health education. In: Mason J, editor. Concepts in Dental Public Health. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkin. pp. 139–57.

Ozdemir, D. (2008). Dental caries: The most common disease worldwide and preventive strategies. International Journal of Microbiology Research and Reviews, 6(5), 340-344.

Ozdemir, D. (2014). Dental caries and preventive strategies. Journal of Educational and Instructional Studies in the World, 4(4), 20-24.

Pediatr Dent. (2008). Policy on early childhood caries (ECC). Classifications, consequences, and preventive strategies. 30, 40–3.

Pitts, N. B. (2007). Are we ready to move from operative to non-operative/preventive treatment of dental caries in clinical practice? Caries Research, 38(3), 294-304.

Schriks, M.C., & van Amerongen WE. (2003). Atraumatic perspectives of ART: Psychological and physiological aspects of treatment with and without rotary instruments. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol, 31(1), 15-20.

Seale, N.S., & Casamassimo, P.S. (2003). Access to dental care for children in the United States: a survey of general practitioners. J Am Dent Assoc. 134(12), 1630–1640.

Seppä, L. (2001). The future of preventive programs in countries with different systems for dental care. Caries Research, 35(1), 26-29.

Struzycka, I. (2014). The oral microbiome in dental caries. Polish Journal of Microbiology, 63(2), 127–135.

Ten Cate, J.M., & Featherstone, J.D. (1991). Mechanistic aspects of the interactions between fluoride and dental enamel. Crit Rev Oral Biol Med. 2(3), 283-96.

Teng, F., Yang, F., & Huang, S., (2015). Prediction of early childhood caries via spatial-temporal variations of oral microbiota. Cell Host & Microbe, 18(3), 296–306.

Tinanoff, N., & Douglass, J.M. (2001). Clinical decision-making for caries management in primary teeth. J Dent Educ. 65, 1133–1142.

Touger-Decker, R., & Van Loveren C. (2003). Sugars and dental caries. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 78(4), 881–892.

Twetman, S., Garcia-Godoy, F., & Goepferd, S.J. (2000). Infant oral health. Dent Clin North Am. 44, 487–505.

Weintraub, J.A. (2003). Fluoride varnish for caries prevention: Comparisons with other preventive agents and recommendations for a community-based protocol. Spec Care Dentist. 23,180–6