Introduction. Early childhood diet is of critical importance for the processes of tooth dentition, formation of organic matrix, mineralization and maturation of dental structures. The involvement of inorganic elements in the building up of bone and teeth tissue in childhood is an essential process, determining the achievement of their peak density. Considering the scientists’ interest in oral health, with emphasis on childhood and increasing of caries incidence at this age, it is necessary to investigate deeply the issue at national level as well.
The objective of the study was to investigate the dietary intake of inorganic elements – calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, fluorine, sodium, and iron in children with early childhood caries.
Material and methods. The dietary mineral intake of 53 children, aged 3-6 years, diagnosed with early childhood caries, was studied by the 24-hour dietary recall method. The data revealed by parents’ responses were processed statistically, compared to the referent values for inorganic elements intake in this age.
Results. The results of investigated group of children revealed an average daily intake of calcium of 473.4±222.5 mg, phosphorus 745±177 mg, fluorine 0.8±0.37 mg, magnesium 139±43 mg, iron 6.7±4.64 mg, and of sodium 1159±529 mg.
Conclusions. The detected lower intake of calcium, magnesium, fluorine could be considered as risk factor for caries development and the other elements are associated with children’s general health status. The specificity of the needs and health status requires complex caries treatment starting in early childhood together with adequate diet.
Keywords: nutrition, inorganic substances, early childhood, caries.
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