Long-Term Breast-Feeding Raises Kids’ Risk for Cavities

Long-Term Breast-Feeding Raises Kids’ Risk for Cavities

  • Blog

the science of smiles best dentist pasadena caBreast-fed children past the age of two could be at higher risk of cavities, say researchers.

Since there hasn’t been many studies looking at how breast-feeding, bottle-feeding and sugar consumption affect children’s risk for cavities  — researchers designed a study to examine whether the length of breast-feeding alone is a risk factor for cavities.

More: 3 Common Mistakes You Can Make With Your Kids’ Teeth

Decay and Cavities Begin to Appear in 5-Year-Olds

For the study, scientists examined a group of 5-year-old children who were examined by a dentist for filled, decayed and missing primary teeth.

The results?

Nearly one-quarter had severe cavities, or six or more filled, decayed or missing primary teeth. Those breast-fed for two years or more had double the risk of severe cavities than those breast-fed for under one year.

Link to On-Demand Feeding

The reason for the association, say scientists, is what’s called on-demand feeding, especially at night. This means children are fed whenever they signal that they’re hungry —  rather than according to a set schedule. This type of feeding makes it difficult to clean teeth.

More: Insane Study Shows What Happens When You Cut Sugar From Kids’ Diets

This is not to say breast-feeding doesn’t have benefits for teeth. Studies show babies breast-fed for just six months are 72% less likely to develop crooked teeth.

Breast Feeding Recommendations

Breast-feeding recommendations vary: The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests one year of breast-feeding and then re-assessing if both mother and child want to keep going; the World Health Organization suggests breast-feeding to go on for as many as two years or more.

ABOUT THE SCIENCE OF SMILES®

THE SCIENCE OF SMILES® offers affordable cosmetic and laser dentistry and gentle, compassionate general dental care in Pasadena, CA. Our office is conveniently situated with extended hours to meet your needs. At THE SCIENCE OF SMILES®, we offer most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures, complete dental rebuilding, sleep apnea, and TMJ/ Headache management. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover affordable up-to-date dentistry and a team who truly cares at THE SCIENCE OF SMILES®.

Close Menu