According to a study in Canada, low vitamin D levels during pregnancy may lead to cavities for toddlers. The study establishes a link between women’s low vitamin D levels during pregnancy to a higher risk of cavities in their infants.
This is not the first study to show light on the subject as previous works had also shown that how vitamin D deficiency among mothers could cause defects in the enamel of their infants’ teeth. Those studies also established how these defects can increase the risks of tooth decay.
The study, done at the University of Manitoba’s dental school in Winnipeg, was initiated to assess whether vitamin D levels during pregnancy would really lead to higher cavity rates for the concerned infants.
The research team selected a sample size of 207 pregnant women, measured vitamin D levels in them in the second or early third trimester, and then examined the teeth of 135 of their infants (on an average of 16 months old). The team recruited pregnant women majorly from a poor, urban area, keeping in tune with the subject of the study.
Among the chosen women, while their vitamin D levels were overall in the normal range, a third of them had low levels to the extreme. The resultant findings showed cavities among 23 to 36% those toddlers.
According to the findings, vitamin D levels were significant found lower in those pregnant women whose infants later had cavities than those whose did not. It also established a direct link between low vitamin D levels in would-be-mothers and high cases of cavities in their infants.
The findings not only associated low vitamin levels in mothers as causes of cavities in their toddlers but also included defects in the tooth enamel as among the causes.
As per the team, the risk of cavities can be reduced among toddlers by improving nutrition during tooth formation and in early childhood. They also state that prevention steps should start during pregnancy itself by improving maternal nutrition either through a better diet or vitamin D supplementation.
The study is congruent with the advice of health experts regarding the need of vitamin D intake for pregnant women. Most health experts are of opinion that all pregnant ladies must take 4000-5000 (International Units per day) vitamin D3 to minimize risks that pregnancy may cause.
The intake of required vitamin D levels could save would-be mothers from several health concerns or at least reduce risks premature delivery, birth defects, respiratory infections etc.
However, not all health experts agree on the need of vitamin D supplements for pregnant women. Some don’t advice supplementation and rather ask pregnant ladies to look to maintain proper vitamin D levels in the natural way by enjoying the sun, by eating a right diet, and by cutting back on sugar and carbohydrate intake.
And yes, sugar must be avoided during pregnancy as it could lead to dental cavities in would-be babies. To know on the subject, it’s always better to consult a dentist nearby.