Early childhood caries (ECC) has a profound impact on a child’s quality of life, and its management remains a challenge for the paediatric dentist, mainly because it depends on radical changes in the child/carers’ daily behaviour and any dental treatment must be provided to very young child.
This case report describes the on-going care of a 2-year-old child presenting with ECC and management until permanent dentition is complete. All patient-focused, teamdelivered care was delivered using the minimum intervention oral care framework, implementing non-invasive and minimally invasive preventive procedures. Throughout the care provided, oral and dental health education was reinforced in all visits. The
child’s mother was trained to perform effective biofilm control and dietary habits were adjusted, especially baby-bottle removal during sleep. The child was initially anxious and resistant towards any dental examination and clinical procedures. However, with effort from the oral healthcare team members, the patient became compliant, allowing the mother to perform suitable oral hygiene measures, as well as accepting the clinical procedures carried out by the paediatric dentist. The clinical procedures consisted of atraumatic restorations and fluoride varnish applications. During the subsequent years after the baseline treatment, follow-up visits included continued dietary and oral hygiene instruction with positive behavior reinforcement, fluoride topical applications and tooth-restoration complex maintenance with glass-ionomer cement where needed. Currently, the patient is 19 years old and has a stable, healthy permanent dentition.
Understanding of the causes of oral diseases by the patients’ caregivers, alongside with pragmatic practical guidance to maintain good oral health, can reduce the risk for acquiring future disease, since caries activity control is the basis for successful caries management.
Vol.24 – n.1/2023
Harvard: D. S. Wambier, A. C. R. Chibinski, L. M. Wambier, M. F. de Lima Navarro, A. Banerjee (2023) "Minimum intervention oral care management of early childhood caries: a 17-year follow-up case report", European Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, 24(1), pp20-29. doi: 10.23804/ejpd.2023.24.01.04
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