Health – Siblings “inherit” cavities from the first

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If the first child in a family has dental problems, the following ones also have them and they are even increased, according to a Basel study.

Dental health may deteriorate in younger children.

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If the firstborn baby already has cavities, there is an increased risk of cavities in younger siblings. To confirm this hypothesis, researchers analyzed the results of a dental examination in which 13,596 children in the canton of Basel-City underwent a screening test for cavities. They were able to establish a clear bond between the siblings. In detail, if the first child has already been exposed to cavities, younger siblings are 3.7 times more likely to have damaged teeth. The cases of active caries, which must be treated urgently, are 3.5 times more numerous. The smaller the age difference, the greater the risk for cadets. The reasons for this increase in cavities are not advanced by researchers.

For better targeted preventive measures

Nationality also has an influence on the frequency of the appearance of cavities in children. The probability is generally lower for Swiss pupils than for children with an immigrant background. In addition, the area of ​​residence plays an important role. Depending on the location, the proportion of schoolchildren who have already had at least one cavity varies from 26.8 to 65.7%. The correlation between siblings was not entirely unexpected for researchers. “This is why we tried to prove this correlation,” explains dentist Andreina Grieshaber. This finding means that preventive measures can now be used in a more targeted way with affected families. ”

(jbm)

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