The dental health of children in western countries has improved without a concomitant decrease in the mean sucrose consumption. Our aim was to analyse the association of long-term sucrose consumption with dental health in children representing the highest (n = 33, 18 boys) and the lowest 5 percentiles (n = 33, 21 boys) of sucrose intake, in a study where food consumption was prospectively recorded from infancy to 10 years of age. The sum of decayed, missing and filled teeth in the primary (dmft) and permanent (DMFT) teeth was assessed. Children's sucrose intake in the high intake group was constantly higher than in their counterparts (p < 0.001), and already exceeded 10% of energy intake (E %) at 2 years of age. The mean +/- SD of the dmft + DMFT scores was higher in the high than in the low sucrose intake group (3.9 +/- 3.9 and 1.9 +/- 2.5, respectively; p = 0.032). We conclude that a persistently high sucrose intake increases the risk of dental caries in children.
Copyright 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel