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Study Reminds Parents to Look Out for “Chalky Teeth”

Update Date: Aug 26, 2013 03:41 PM EDT

One of the many concerns parents have to deal with when it comes to young children is dental hygiene. Oftentimes, brushing one's teeth properly and using floss can be a hassle. However, if parents are not diligent with their children when it comes to keeping their teeth clean, it could mean a lot of future expenses. In a new report, researchers remind parents that there is also another dental condition that requires attention. According to this new study, parents tend to forget about "chalky teeth," also known as molar hypomineralization, which could lead to pricey procedures when left unchecked.

"Parents think they've done everything right for their child's teeth - good hygiene, fluoride and diet. Then they take them to the dentist and amongst a mouthful of healthy teeth are a few bad ones. They want to know what's gone wrong." said David Manton, Professor of Pediatric Dentistry at the University of Melbourne.

Chalky teeth is a condition that is tied to how the teeth grows in the jawline. It does not result from poor dental hygiene, diet or lifestyle, which is why it is even more important that parents keep a lookout for it. When chalky teeth, which can be detected by looking for brown or extra white spots on teeth, is left untreated, it can lead to tooth decay and eventually tooth extraction. Although there is no cure for this condition, proper treatment would prevent surgeries. In this study, the researchers reported that one in every six children has this condition.

"The commonest sign is creamy-brown or extra-white spots on your child's teeth. You may see them on their baby teeth, and that could be a sign of trouble later when the adult molars come through, which are the teeth most at risk," Manton added according to Medical Xpress. "The condition results in teeth that have abnormally low amounts of calcium mineral. So even in mildly affected teeth you can see some extra-white patches - that's a key sign."

The researchers recommend parents utilize the D3 group's newest website that launched today. The D3 group is an interdisciplinary research network that studies developmental dental defects in Melbourne, Australia. This group recommends that all parents routinely check their children's teeth starting from the first baby tooth all the way to the growth of adult teeth in order to prevent future dental complications. 

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