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Med Princ Pract 2007;16:437–442

Effects of Programs for Prevention of Early Childhood Caries

A Systematic Review

Ammari J.B.a · Baqain Z.H.b · Ashley P.F.c
aPediatric Dentistry Clinic, Al-Nasr Medical Center, and bDepartment of Oral Surgery, Oral Medicine and Periodontology, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan; cDepartment of Pediatric Dentistry, Eastman Dental Institute for Oral Health Care Sciences, University College London, London, UK
email Corresponding Author

 goto top of outline Key Words

  • Dental caries
  • Young children
  • Caries prevention
  • Early childhood caries

 goto top of outline Abstract

Objective: To determine the most effective intervention program for prevention of early childhood caries. Materials and Methods: All studies published after 1966 were identified by searching electronic databases (Medline, The Cochrane Library, Embase, Dissertation and Serfile databases) and manual searching. Studies were included if they analyzed the effect of an intervention to prevent caries in 0- to 5-year-old children, recorded caries as dmfs, dmft, dfs or dft, and utilized a randomized controlled study design. Results: The initial search produced 916 citations, 19 of which met the inclusion criteria. The quality of the articles was assessed independently by the reviewers based on randomized selection and double blinding. The 7 articles included in the actual review evaluated the effects of dental health education, prenatal fluoride administration, topical fluoride application, preventive dental programs, and use of fluoridated toothpaste. Meta-analysis was not possible because of differences in the types of intervention among the studies. Conclusion: Conclusive evidence regarding the best intervention to prevent early childhood caries could not be drawn due to the flawed design of somepapers. However, fluoride-based interventions appear to be effective in young children. More studies are required to determine the best method of delivery.

Copyright © 2007 S. Karger AG, Basel

 goto top of outline References
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    External Resources

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 goto top of outline Author Contacts

Dr. Jumana B. Ammari
Pediatric Dentistry Clinic, Al-Nasr Medical Center
University of Jordan, PO Box 13930
Amman 11942 (Jordan)
Tel. +962 6 585 5032, Fax +962 6 461 7117, E-Mail

 goto top of outline Article Information

Received: May 9, 2006
Revised: January 14, 2007
Number of Print Pages : 6
Number of Figures : 0, Number of Tables : 1, Number of References : 15

 goto top of outline Publication Details

Medical Principles and Practice (International Journal of the Kuwait University Health Sciences Centre)

Vol. 16, No. 6, Year 2007 (Cover Date: October 2007)

Journal Editor: Owunwanne, A. (Kuwait)
ISSN: 1011–7571 (print), 1423–0151 (Online)

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