2231–4202  (Print)                
2249–9970  (Online)             
Peer Reviewed and Refereed Journal

JPAST is a Peer Reviewed & Refereed biannual multidisciplinary journal starting from July 2011. Articles are invited for Dec 23 issue.
Volume 1, Issue 2, Pages 51-54, July 2011

Early Childhood Caries : A Dental Form Of

Health Care Neglect

 Manish Goel*, G. Venkanna Babu** and Manish Sharma#

*Professor, Department of pedodontics and preventive dentistry,

Maitri College of dentistry and research centre, Durg, (C.G.)

**Senior Lecturer, Department of pedodontics and preventive dentistry,

Maitri College of dentistry and research centre, Durg, (C.G.)

#Professor, Department of prosthodontics,

 Sardar Patel institute of dental sciences, Lucknow (U.P)


A child is defined as a young human being below the age of full physical development. A child is dependent on his parents or caretakers for the entire physical and mental wellbeing. Any aberration in the parent’s attitudes towards the child results in abuse and neglect of the child. Dental neglect can be indicative of a wider welfare picture of child neglect and abuse and is the most prevalent form of health care neglect especially in India. Failure to seek or obtain proper dental care may result from factors such as family isolation, lack of finance, parental ignorance, or lack of perceived value of oral health.  Early childhood caries, a form of dental caries, can occur any time after teeth eruption and may occur in infant or children with frequent and prolonged exposure to liquids rich in sugar especially at night. Neglecting early childhood caries can lead to pain, infection, loss of tooth  and  function which can adversely affect activities necessary for normal growth and development of an infant or a child. At present , dental neglect is a field especially related to early childhood caries that has received little direct attention. Collaborative working both between dental and other child caring disciplines is necessary to deal with this problem. Pediatricians and other child health care  professionals can have a major impact on prevention of early childhood caries  by early intervention.

Keywords: Dental neglect, early childhood caries, dental caries, child neglect.

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