The newsLINK Group - Juice in Sippy Cups Promotes Cavities

Editorial Library Category: General Business | Dental | Pediatric Dentistry Topics: Toddler Oral Hygiene Title: Juice in Sippy Cups Promotes Cavities in Toddlers Author: newsLINK Staff Synopsis: When parents began taking their toddlers to the dentist for a dental checkup, sometimes they have an increasingly common but unpleasant surprise in the office: the toddler has cavities, and will have to get a filling. Editorial: Juice in Sippy Cups Promotes Cavities in Toddlers 4064 South Highland Drive, Millcreek, Utah 84124 │ thenewslinkgroup.com │ (v) 801.676.9722 │ (tf) 855.747.4003 │ (f) 801.742.5803 Editorial Library | © The newsLINK Group LLC 1 When parents begin taking their toddlers to the dentist for a dental checkup, sometimes they have an increasingly common but unpleasant surprise in the office: the toddler has cavities, and will have to get a filling. Most parents are careful to take good care of their toddler’s teeth because they don’t want those important, early experiences with a dentist to be negative ones, so how did that toddler manage to get a cavity? If a parent usually gives juice in a sippy cup to a child, that one bad habit is probably the culprit. A sugary drink in a sippy cup is a pretty good recipe for growing cavities. The Reason for Sippy Cups Sippy cups were invented as a way to transition from nursing or a bottle to drinking from a regular cup. Their practical, no- spill design, however, makes them attractive for mothers who don’t want to spend time mopping up sticky liquid from the kitchen table or floor, and so children often use them for much longer than was originally intended. After all, a young child can probably drink from a cup but will still accidentally knock that cup over on a frequent basis for several years. Even one experience with a small child who has accidentally knocked one or more glasses of ice and water into your lap is enough to convince you that sippy cups are still a good idea. And that’s the problem: sippy cups are convenient. Dr. Philip H. Hunke, D.D.S., M.S.D., is a past president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD). He points out that sipping on a sugary drink for a long time exposes a child to an increased risk of decay. According to him, the only time a sippy cup should have anything in it but water is during an actual meal. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) support him. They compared records for two periods, 1988 to 1994 and 1999 to 2002. The results were surprising. Older children had fewer cavities, but for children between two and five, the incidence of cavities went up 15.2%. The First Dental Checkup For Hunke, however, the problem that is bigger than sippy cups is the fact that most parents wait too long before taking their children in to see the dentist for the first time. Despite an AAPD recommendation that the first visit should take place sometime between the appearance of the first tooth and the child’s first birthday, too many parents wait until later. A 2005 National Survey of Children’s Health (NSHC) found that 10% of all one-year-old children had seen a dentist. Two-year-old children did slightly better at 23.8%. That first visit gives the dentist an opportunity to talk with parents about the right way to use a sippy cup, along with other information about caring for a child’s teeth at home in order to prevent cavities. The dentist can also inspect the child and determine whether teeth are developing correctly. As Hunke points out, children who have healthy teeth do better in school and in life. Forming the right habits early can directly affect a child’s later success. Sources: “Use Only Water in Sippy cups or Increase Cavity Risk,” no author, dated 26 January 2007, article emailed to me by Sophie. Word Count: 524 Copyscape Clear Date: 12.15.2014

RkJQdWJsaXNoZXIy NjAyOTE=