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Video - Kids caries

Early kids' teeth care is crucial

Can Oral Care For Babies Prevent Future Cavities?
Research Indicates Lollipops May Reduce Tooth Decay
About Streptococcus mutans
How to keep kids' teeth healthy
What types of bad habits do you commonly have to address?
What are the trends in pediatric dental health?
What types of problems do you see that are leading to early intervention with braces or oral surgeries
in young children?
How to Properly Brush and Floss Your Teeth - video
Eruption of teeth (mouth open) - animation - video
Video Eruption of teeth - video
Tooth decay (dental caries) - video
Brushing with braces - video

Can Oral Care For Babies Prevent Future Cavities?
Article Date: 17 Aug 2011 - 1:00 PDT

New parents have one more reason to pay attention to the oral health of their toothless babies.
A recent University of Illinois study confirms the presence of bacteria associated with early c
hildhood caries (ECC) in infant saliva.

ECC is a virulent form of caries, more commonly known as tooth decay or a cavity. Cavities are
the most prevalent infectious disease in U.S. children, according to the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention.

"By the time a child reaches kindergarten, 40 percent have dental cavities," said Kelly Swanson,
lead researcher and U of I professor of animal science. "In addition, populations who are of
low socioeconomic status, who consume a diet high in sugar, and whose mothers have low education
levels are 32 times more likely to have this disease."

Swanson's novel study focused on infants before teeth erupted, compared to most studies focused
on children already in preschool or kindergarten - after many children already have dental cavities.

"We now recognize that the "window of infectivity," which was thought to occur between 19 and
33 months of age years ago, really occurs at a much younger age," he said. "Minimizing snacks
and drinks with fermentable sugars and wiping the gums of babies without teeth, as suggested by
the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, are important practices for new parents to follow
to help prevent future cavities."

In addition, his team used high-throughput molecular techniques to characterize the entire
community of oral microbiota, rather than focusing on identification of a few individual bacteria.

"Improved DNA technologies allow us to examine the whole population of bacteria, which gives us
a more holistic perspective," Swanson said. "Like many other diseases, dental cavities are a result
of many bacteria in a community, not just one pathogen."

Through 454 pyrosequencing, researchers learned that the oral bacterial community in infants
without teeth was much more diverse than expected and identified hundreds of species. This
demonstration that many members of the bacterial community that cause biofilm formation or are
associated with ECC are already present in infant saliva justifies more research on the evolution
of the infant oral bacterial community, Swanson said.

Could manipulating the bacterial community in infants before tooth eruption help prevent this
disease in the future?

"The soft tissues in the mouth appear to serve as reservoirs for potential pathogens prior to
tooth eruption," he said. "We want to characterize the microbial evolution that occurs in the
oral cavity between birth and tooth eruption, as teeth erupt, and as dietary changes occur such
as breastfeeding vs. formula feeding, liquid to solid food, and changes in nutrient profile."

Swanson said educating parents-to-be on oral hygiene and dietary habits is the most important
strategy for prevention of dental cavities.

"Comparative analysis of salivary bacterial microbiome diversity in edentulous infants and
their mothers or primary care givers using pyrosequencing" was published on August 10 in
PLoS ONE. Researchers include Kelly Swanson, Kimberly Cephas, Juhee Kim, Rose Ann Mathai
and Kathleen Barry of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Scot Dowd of the Research
and Testing Laboratory and Medical Biofilm Research Institute in Lubbock, Texas; and Brandon
Meline of the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District. This study was funded by the United
States Department of Agriculture-Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service
(project ILLU-538-396).


Research Indicates Lollipops May Reduce Tooth Decay

A recent study, published by the European Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, demonstrated that
sugar-free lollipops containing licorice root extract significantly reduced the bacteria that
causes tooth decay, specifically in pre-school children with high-risk of tooth decay.

The study, funded by the Research and Data Institute of the affiliated companies of Delta
Dental of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee, Kentucky, New Mexico and North Carolina, analyzed
66 preschool students ages 2 to 5 enrolled in the Greater Lansing Area Head Start Program.
Each student received a lollipop for 10 minutes twice daily for three weeks.

"Dental decay is one of the most common childhood diseases with more than half of children
ages 5 to 17 having had at least one cavity or filling," said Jed J. Jacobson, D.D.S., M.S.,
M.P.H., chief science officer at Delta Dental. "We are working to find simple, effective
regimens that will encourage prevention and control of dental disease. While the results
of this pilot clinical trial are encouraging, more research is needed to confirm these early findings."

Results showed a significant reduction in Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans), the primary
bacteria responsible for tooth decay, during the three-week period when the lollipops were
being used and lasting for an additional 22 days before beginning to rebound.

Using a saliva test, the amount of S. mutans in the patient's mouth was measured before and
during the three-week period where lollipops were used, as well as for several weeks thereafter.

"The use of the licorice root lollipops is an ideal approach as it will stop the transfer and
implantation of the bacteria that cause dental decay from mothers to their infants and toddlers,"
said Martin Curzon, editor-in-chief, European Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. "It also has
the merit of being a low cost-high impact public dental health measure."

"This study is important not only for dental caries prevention research, but also demonstrates
the feasibility of a classroom protocol using a unique delivery system suitable for young
children," said Jacqueline Tallman, R.D.H., B.S., M.P.A., principal investigator of the study.
"Early prevention is key for lifetime oral health and effective innovative protocols are needed."

The investigation was a collaborative effort of the Greater Lansing Area Head Start Program,
the University of Michigan and the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). Delta Dental's
Research and Data Institute provided the grants as part of its mission to remain on the cutting
edge of finding solutions to oral health problems.

"Our Head Start program was excited to participate in the Lollipop project," said Teresa Spitzer,
R.N., Health Programs Manager, Capital Community Head Start Inc. Head Start and Early Childhood
Programs. "Staff and parents were intrigued by something as simple as a special Lollipop having
the ability to decrease the incidence of dental caries in children. The outcomes only reinforced
the value the parents placed on the project."

The lollipops, manufactured by Dr. John's Candies of Grand Rapids, Mich., were developed using
FDA-approved materials by Dr. Wenyuan Shi, a microbiologist at the University of California
Los Angeles (UCLA), and C3 Jian, Inc., a research and development company in California.
The orange-flavored, sugarless lollipops contain extract of licorice root (Glycyrrhiza uralensis),
which targets and is thought to kill the primary bacteria (Streptococcus mutans or S. mutans)
responsible for tooth decay.

About Streptococcus mutans

There are approximately 700 types of bacteria in the human mouth. While most are harmless,
Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans) is considered the primary culprit in tooth decay. They live in
a biofilm (plaque) that adheres to the teeth, consume sugar and release acid that erodes tooth enamel,
causing decay. Regular brushing and flossing, along with dental checkups, can help to keep S. mutans
and Lactobacillus casei in check.

Source: Delta Dental of Michigan

How to keep kids' teeth healthy
Early care is crucial, says a pediatric dentist.
By Amanda Mascarelli, HealthKey
July 1, 2011

Dr. Rhea Haugseth has been a pediatric dentist for 30 years and is the newly elected president of the
American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. In this edited interview conducted June 3, Haugseth, who
practices in Marietta, Ga., discusses the importance of oral health in infants and young children and
some of the common factors that can lead to serious dental problems.

Why are major organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of
Pediatric Dentistry pushing for a dental visit by the time a child is 1 year of age? Why is this age
so critical?

We do an examination to make sure everything's healthy, tissues look good, and that we don't see any
abnormalities in there. But the majority of our time on that first visit is to educate the caregivers.
We're kind of like the pediatricians of the mouth. So it's like a well-baby visit. We give them cues
on diet, such as when they should be getting off the bottle if they're on one, and drinking milk and
juice only with a meal.

What types of bad habits do you commonly have to address?

We're there to explain to them that a sippy cup is great or a child walking around with a bottle is fine
using it kind of like a pacifier if it has nothing but water in it. People tend to let their children
walk around with sippy cups with either pop or milk or juice in them. In the South, unfortunately
sometimes it's honey water in there.

Otherwise, what happens is every single time they take a sip of any sugared beverage or any food
even like snacking on a bowl of dry cereal all day long  it starts a 20-minute acid attack in the
child's mouth. The bacteria that are naturally in our mouths take sugar of any kind they don't care
whether it's fruit sugar or milk sugar, white sugar, brown sugar, or honey they take that sugar and
produce an acid.

Videos for kids:

Brush your teeth - Video The Tooth Brushing Rap Yo - Video Tooth Brushing for Kids - Crawford the Cat - Educational Video My shiny teeth and me - animation So what we prefer to do is have them drinking nothing but water and trying to isolate their snack into one particular time. Sit down, eat as much of it as you're going to let them have, take it away, and then don't do it again for another few hours. And we push for a little healthier snacks fruit, vegetables, cheeses, that kind of thing. So that's the issue it's the frequency of the snacking and/or drinking of a sugared beverage and then the duration of it also. When someone asks me what kind of candy I would rather a child have I'd opt for a candy bar or a piece of chocolate that goes down pretty quick over a sucker or lollypop or something that's going to stay in their mouth longer. Dried fruits like raisins and cranberries also tend to stay in all the nooks and crannies of your teeth. They're very nutritious, and I encourage parents to do that, but we recommend giving them some water afterward and trying to get them to swish it around as best they can to dislodge some of that. What are the trends in pediatric dental health? We are seeing an increase in decay rates in children ages 2 to 5. That group is getting more decay than the older kids. We see more than 50% of those kids having decay. The 6-12 age range has had a decrease in their decay rates as well as those in the 12-16 year age group. In the children ages 2 to 5, there are multiple things going on. The big culprits seem to be the sugared beverages in the sippy cup, the frequency of them getting these snack foods and sugared beverages all day every day, and the lack of education and knowledge of the parent that they are supposed to be brushing these kids' teeth. It's amazing to me how many parents come in with kids under 2 and the parents say 'Oh, they brush all by themselves,' and their teeth are just coated with plaque. Children that age don't have the physical dexterity to be able to do that. They usually can't brush by themselves until one of these three things are met: 1) they can tie their own shoes; 2) they can write cursive; or 3) they can cut up their own meats on their plates. If they can do any of those three, they're probably going to have the motor skills to be able to brush by themselves and do a good job. I usually tell parents it's usually that 7- to 9-year-old that maybe can brush by themselves. Most of them can't floss by themselves until 10 or 11 years of age. How to Properly Brush and Floss Your Teeth Eruption of teeth (mouth open) - animation Video Eruption of teeth Tooth decay (dental caries) Brushing with braces What types of problems do you see that are leading to early intervention with braces or oral surgeries in young children? Well, for instance if a child is a thumb sucker, or if they're on a pacifier for a long time, or if they have severe allergies, the end result of those three is that the palate is too narrow. Say you're a mouth breather because you have an allergy block and you can't breathe through your nose. What makes the palate grow is that when you're at rest with your lips closed, your tongue rests in the roof of your mouth. That's where it's supposed to be if you're a nasal breather. As the tongue grows, that gives the palate the right size and shape to house that tongue. As you develop, your tongue is the strongest muscle in your body, and that is what shapes your palate. If your child is a thumb sucker or is on a pacifier for a long time, their tongue is down below. So the tongue is not able to get up there and help shape the palate. And with thumb sucking, the thumb is up against the palate. As that sucking action happens, the muscles in the cheeks are actually constricting during the night. So they're keeping the upper jaw from growing wider. What happens is that the palate gets too small and the lower jaw continues to develop normally, so you end up with what's called a cross-bite in the back of your mouth. If you have a cross-bite, in most cases you have to shift your lower jaw to one side or the other in order to get your back teeth to bite. When I see that in a 4- or 5-year-old, we want to treat that by widening the upper jaw back to where it normally would have been for wherever they are in their growth. Then the lower jaw can function and bite straight up and down. It can track right down the middle instead of having to do it to one side or the other. If you don't correct that early, the joint in your jaw, right in front of your ear, that joint finishes its formation at different ages, let's say 7 to 9 years of age. If you wait until all their teeth have come in when they're 12 or 13 and if they're biting crooked, their lower jaw will grow that way. Pacifiers can also move a child's upper front teeth forward causing buckteeth, or in most cases the children end up with an open bite, where the front top and bottom teeth don't overlap each other; there is an opening between their top and bottom front teeth. When that happens, they can develop a tongue thrust or a lisp, which is going to be more of a permanent problem. Is there a set age at which a child needs to do away with the pacifier in order to prevent long-term problems? There's no definite age. It's very much based on the individual child, both on their emotional growth and maturity and where are they in their dental development. I am all about having an emotionally happy camper and having their psyches developing well. I would much rather have that and deal with any dental issues than to say at age 1 we've got to take away everybody's pacifier, because some kids will immediately go to a thumb. You can start by reducing the time when they have the pacifier. And there are some great positive things you can do when they're getting closer to the 2-year range: Set a timer, so if they can go without it for that amount of time during the bedtime story, give the child a gold star or five gold stars. Use it as a cause of celebration, something that the family acknowledges she did great. Source:,0,4849708.story

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