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Beware of Tooth Decay

Despite all the advances in dental care, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that tooth decay is on the rise among preschoolers. Many national organizations agree that tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in children.

When we eat a lot of sugary foods, common oral bacteria secrete acids that can dissolve tooth enamel and cause cavities. Make sure to offer your children healthier snacks like fresh fruits and vegetables.

The good news is that regular brushing with a fluoride containing tooth paste and regular dental visits can help your children stay cavity-free. Taking charge of your child's oral health in the early years is worth the effort. There is a good chance he or she will continue using the healthy habits you instill. Those habits increase the odds that your child will have a healthy mouth, gums, and teeth — and a smile that will last a lifetime.

"Dental Hygiene: How to Care for Your Child's Teeth." American Academy of Family Physicians. http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/children/parents/kidshealthy/healthy-choice/227.html. Accessed 2013.
"Baby Bottle Tooth Decay." Mouth Healthy, American Dental Association. http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/b/baby-bottle-tooth-decay. Accessed 2013.
"Regular Dental Visits." American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. http://d27vj430nutdmd.cloudfront.net/17249/64412/64412.3.pdf. Accessed 2013.
"Trends in Oral Health Status: United States, 1988-1994 and 1999-2004." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. April 2007, Vital Health Statistics series 11, no. 248, pages 1-92. http://www.aapd.org/publications/brochures/regdent.asp. Accessed 2013.

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