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Protecting All Children's Teeth (PACT): A Pediatric Oral Health Training Program
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Factors in Development, continued

Sugar
The metabolism of carbohydrates by oral bacteria creates acid that demineralizes enamel.

The risk of demineralization and caries development is directly related to the frequency with which the teeth are exposed to sugar.

Caries formation is positively associated with the following activities:

 
Frequent or prolonged contact of the teeth with sugary substances.
 
Consumption of sticky foods.
 
Dipping a pacifier in sweeteners like honey or corn syrup.
 
Regular use of medications that contain sucrose, including some multi-vitamins.

Caries risk is diminished when the following steps are taken:
 
Teeth are immediately brushed after eating to remove sticky foods.
 
Fresh fruit, vegetables, and whole grain snacks are chosen instead of candy or juice.
 
Fast Facts
 
The risk of demineralization and caries development is in direct relationship to the frequency in which the teeth are exposed to sugar.
 
All fermentable sugars can be metabolized by bacteria.
 
Because certain medications contain sugar, physicians should be mindful when prescribing them.
 
Brushing teeth immediately after eating sticky foods and choosing fresh fruit, vegetables, and whole grain snacks helps to decrease caries risk.
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