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Breastfeeding past two years linked to tooth decay

Written by: QMI Agency
Mar. 17, 2014

(Fotolia)


Children who are breastfed past two years of age are more likely to suffer cavities and other forms of tooth decay, a new study has found.

The U.S. study looked at 458 low-income families in Porto Alegre, Brazil, and found children who were breastfed for more than two years were more likely to have tooth decay on their baby teeth.

This, despite the fact the World Heath Organization recommends breastfeeding for "two years or beyond," the study says.

"A critical question raised by our findings is why breastfeeding, a normative and otherwise health-promoting human behaviour, would be associated with deleterious dental outcomes," the study reads.

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Because most children were eating food and breastfeeding by two, the researchers suggest the combination of the two might be a factor.

"Laboratory studies demonstrating greater cariogenic potential of human milk with the addition of outside sugars support this hypothesis."

The study was published in the journal Annals of Epidemiology.

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