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Study: Prevention is the Best Way to Manage Caries in Children

A 3-year study comparing three treatment options for caries in children, has found no evidence to suggest that conventional restorations are more effective than sealing decay into teeth, or using prevention techniques alone to stop pain and infection from caries in primary teeth

A 3-year study comparing three treatment options for caries in children, has found no evidence to suggest that conventional restorations are more effective than sealing decay into teeth, or using prevention techniques alone to stop pain and infection from caries in primary teeth. Led by dentists from the Universities of Dundee, Newcastle, Sheffield, Cardiff, Queen Mary University of London and Leeds, the English study suggests prevention is the best way to manage tooth decay.

Dentists working in one of 72 dental clinics throughout the United Kingdom recruited more than 1,140 children between the ages of 3 and 7 with visible tooth decay. Children were then randomly chosen to receive one of three treatment approaches: placing restorations and preventing new decay by reducing sugar intake; drilling out tooth decay, or “drill and fill;” and sealing tooth decay under a metal crown or placing a restoration to stop decay from progressing.

The findings, published in the Journal of Dental Research, found no evidence to suggest that any of the treatment strategies were better than another in terms of making a difference in children’s experience of pain or infection, quality of life, or dental anxiety.

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