IAPD Bangkok Declaration on Early Childhood Caries resonates with a global audience

The international dental community came together to draft and publish the International Association of Paediatric Dentistry (IAPD) Bangkok Declaration on Early Childhood Caries, which provides an internationally accepted definition of Early Childhood Caries (ECC) and proposes recommendations to prevent this disease worldwide. The Declaration was recently published in Pediatric Dentistry and the Journal of Dentistry for Children.

The purpose of the Declaration is to gain worldwide support for an evidence-based definition and a common understanding of the evidence around the aetiology, risk factors, and interventions to reduce ECC, as well as to mobilize collaborative approaches and policies to diminish this chronic disease.

Four principle recommendations

To reduce the prevalence and burden of ECC worldwide, the IAPD Bangkok Declaration recommends the following actions:

  1. Raise awareness of ECC with parents/caregivers, dentists, dental hygienists, physicians, nurses, health professionals, and other stakeholders.
  2. Limit sugar intake in foods and drinks and avoid free sugars for children under 2 years of age.
  3. Perform twice-daily toothbrushing with fluoridated toothpaste (at least 1000 ppm) in all children, using an age‐appropriate amount of paste.
  4. Provide preventive guidance within the first year of life by a health professional or community health worker (building on existing programs—e.g., vaccinations—where possible) and ideally, referral to a dentist for comprehensive continuing care.

FDI World Dental Federation Council member Dr Nikolai Sharkov is part of the panel of international experts that wrote the declaration at the Bangkok Global Summit on ECC in November 2018. FDI encourages oral health professionals to incorporate the recommendations in the Declaration into their daily dental practice.

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