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Objective: To provide an analysis of the association between the longevity of breastfeeding and development of ECC. Determine the optimal time frame in which mothers should cease breastfeeding to reduce ECC development. Methods: Dr. Brickhouse, PubMed, Google Scholar and other scholarly databases were utilized to find current scientific evidence on the effects of breast milk on ECC. Relevant articles were summarized to write a review of literature. 16 articles published from 2015 to the present date were reviewed and cited. Results: From the studies, there is strong evidence to support breastfeeding beyond 12 months of age increases the prevalence of ECC. Furthermore, increased frequency and duration of breastfeeding leads to higher incidence of ECC. Conclusion: Findings indicate dental health care providers should recommend either ceasing breastfeeding at 12 months of age or provide ECC prevention education to caregivers. Further research is required to minimize data discrepancies between US and international countries.

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caries, ECC, breast milk, early childhood caries, frequency, duration, longevity


Congenital, Hereditary, and Neonatal Diseases and Abnormalities | Dental Hygiene | Dental Public Health and Education | Pediatric Dentistry and Pedodontics

Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Dr. Joan Pellegrini

Dental Hygiene Student Scholarship

Date of Submission

May 2018

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