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Pediatr Dent. 2013 May-Jun;35(3):267-71.

Infant feeding practices and risk of dental caries in Japan: the Osaka Maternal And Child Health Study.

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Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, Fukuoka University, Fukuoka, Japan.



The purpose of this study was to prospectively investigate the association between infant feeding practices and the development of early childhood caries (ECC).


Subjects were 315 children. Information about the variables under study and potential confounding factors were obtained by questionnaire during pregnancy and when the children were two to nine, 16 to 24, 29 to 39, and 41 to 49 months old. Outcome data were collected at 41 to 50 months old. Children were classified as having ECC if one or more primary teeth had decayed or been filled.


Compared with breast-feeding for six months or fewer, breast-feeding for 18 months or longer tended to be positively associated with a risk of ECC, and a U-shaped relationship was observed. Use of a bottle to drink sweetened liquids other than milk and the introduction of solid foods at six months old or later were positively associated with a risk of ECC. There was no significant association between bottle-feeding while falling asleep at night and the risk of ECC.


Prolonged breast-feeding, bottle use for sweetened liquids other than milk, and the introduction of solid foods at six months old or later might be risk factors for the development of dental caries.

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