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Fluoridated food on preventing dental caries in Latin American and Caribbean children and adolescents: a systematic review

Journal of Dental Health, Oral Disorders & Therapy
Andrés Celis,<sup>1</sup> María Angélica Michea,<sup>1</sup> Felipe Diaz-Toro,<sup>2</sup> Fanny Petermann-Rocha<sup>3,4</sup>


Dental caries is a significant global public health challenge, particularly among children and adolescents. It affects individuals’ quality of life and can lead to various adverse outcomes, including pain, infection, and impaired school performance. Fluoride has been widely recognized as a key component in oral health improvement programs due to its ability to prevent tooth demineralization and promote remineralization. This systematic review aimed to evaluate the existing literature on the effectiveness of fluoridated food interventions in preventing dental caries in Latin American and Caribbean children and adolescents. The study focuses on this specific region, which faces unique challenges such as limited access to dental care services, socioeconomic inequalities, and cultural practices that may influence oral hygiene and dietary habits. The review follows the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. A comprehensive search was conducted in multiple databases, including EMBASE, MEDLINE, Scielo, and Web of Science. The search strategy utilized relevant MeSH terms and Boolean phrases related to fluoridated food interventions and dental caries in children aged 12 years and younger. After screening the articles based on predetermined inclusion criteria, no study met the eligibility criteria for inclusion in the systematic review. Overall, the systematic review highlights the absence of high-quality available evidence specifically focused on the effectiveness of fluoridated food interventions on children and adolescents of the Latin American and the Caribbean, underscoring the importance of conducting further studies to inform evidence-based decisions regarding public health policies, resource allocation, and oral health promotion strategies in this population.


fluoride, dental caries, children, water fluoridation, milk fluoridation, salt fluoridation