Journal of Food and Nutrition Research
ISSN (Print): 2333-1119 ISSN (Online): 2333-1240 Website: Editor-in-chief: Prabhat Kumar Mandal
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Journal of Food and Nutrition Research. 2019, 7(11), 801-804
DOI: 10.12691/jfnr-7-11-7
Open AccessArticle

Early Childhood Feeding Practices and Its Association with Early Childhood Caries

Roszanadia Rusali1, Nur Najwa Hamali1, Fadhilah Muhammad Razi1, Norashikin Mustafa1, Nor Asilah Harun2 and Nor Azwani Mohd Shukri1,

1Department of Nutrition Sciences, Kulliyyah of Allied Health Sciences, International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), Pahang, Malaysia

2Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Dental Public Health, Kulliyyah of Dentistry, IIUM, Pahang, Malaysia

Pub. Date: November 24, 2019

Cite this paper:
Roszanadia Rusali, Nur Najwa Hamali, Fadhilah Muhammad Razi, Norashikin Mustafa, Nor Asilah Harun and Nor Azwani Mohd Shukri. Early Childhood Feeding Practices and Its Association with Early Childhood Caries. Journal of Food and Nutrition Research. 2019; 7(11):801-804. doi: 10.12691/jfnr-7-11-7


Early childhood caries (ECC) is one of the most prevalent dental diseases among children and is related to their early feeding practices. This multi-factorial disease involves susceptible tooth and host, fermentable carbohydrates in the diet, cariogenic micro-organisms and time (American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, 2008). Thus, this study aimed to identify the associations between bottle-feeding and weaning practices, and ECC formation. By using convenience sampling, 201 children were recruited from the IIUM Outpatient Dental Clinic and ten kindergartens around the area of Kuantan, in the state of Pahang (Malaysia). Examination for caries was conducted visually to determine caries status (with or without caries). The caregivers were requested to fill in a questionnaire regarding feeding practices of their children. The findings of the study indicated that 67% of the children identified with caries practiced bottle-feeding in bed either sometimes or always (every night/day) (p=0.005). The prevalence of ECC was also significantly (p<0.001) the highest (48.5%) among children who had been bottle-feeding for the longest duration (>4 years) among the study population. In addition, the mean intake of sweetened drinks among children with ECC was significantly higher than those with no ECC (5.4 vs. 3.1 servings/week, p=0.001). The results of this research indicated that the increased frequency and prolonged duration of bottle-feeding practices, as well as high consumption of sweet drinks during weaning, could be associated with the formation of ECC. In conclusion, these findings would increase the awareness particularly among parents regarding bottle-feeding practices and weaning diet contents and its potential implication on their children’s oral health.

early childhood caries dental caries breastfeeding bottle-feeding weaning

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