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New review associates vitamin D with lower rates of tooth decay
Date:11/27/2012

ls, medical and dental practices, or hospitals. The subjects were children or young adults between the ages of 2 and 16 years, with a weighted mean age of 10 years.

Hujoel's findings come as no surprise to researchers familiar with past vitamin D studies. According to Dr. Michael Hollick, professor of medicine at the Boston University Medical Center, "the findings from the University of Washington reaffirm the importance of vitamin D for dental health." He said that "children who are vitamin D deficient have poor and delayed teeth eruption and are prone to dental caries."

The vitamin D question takes on greater importance in the light of current public health trends. Vitamin D levels in many populations are decreasing while dental caries levels in young children are increasing.

"Whether this is more than just a coincidence is open to debate," Hujoel said. "In the meantime, pregnant women or young mothers can do little harm by realizing that vitamin D is essential to their offspring's health. Vitamin D does lead to teeth and bones that are better mineralized."

Hujoel added a note of caution to his findings: "One has to be careful with the interpretation of this systematic review. The trials had weaknesses which could have biased the result, and most of the trial participants lived in an era that differs profoundly from today's environment. "

Hujoel has joint appointments as a professor in the University of Washington School of Dentistry's Department of Oral Health Sciences and as an adjunct professor of epidemiology in the UW School of Public Health. His research has concentrated on nutrition with a focus on low-carbohydrate diets, harmful effects of diagnostic radiation, and evidence-based methodology and applications.

His research has also covered sugar substitutes, the use of antibiotics in the treatment of periodontal disease, and cleft lip and cleft palate. He has also studied the link between den
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Contact: Steve Steinberg
ss55@u.washington.edu
206-616-0827
University of Washington
Source:Eurekalert  

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New review associates vitamin D with lower rates of tooth decay
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