Nutrition and healthy dietary patterns play a key role in a child’s long-term oral health. Parents and caregivers generally understand that sugar in the diet contributes to caries, yet they are not aware that nutrient-dense dietary patterns help to support a child’s oral health. Additionally, there is much confusion surrounding the association between ultraprocessed foods, sugar-sweetened beverages, and dental caries in children and adolescents. This course will cover the evidence-based research surrounding the impact of healthy eating habits on the oral health of the infant, child, and adolescent.
After completing this course, the participant should be able to:
- Discuss the synergistic relationship between the child’s diet and oral health
- Formulate how to address the nutritional needs of the pediatric dental patient
- Explain the emerging body of science supporting the association of a healthy eating pattern to preventing oral disease in childhood
- Discuss the current evidence-based nutrition recommendations for children and adolescents that can be integrated into individualized, comprehensive oral health care messages
About the Authors
Ellen Karlin, MMSc, RDN, LDN, FADA, is a registered dietitian in private practice who worked as a nutrition consultant to dentists in Maryland for over three decades. Ellen is a spokesperson for the American Dairy Association North East and a nationally recognized speaker. She has authored and
coauthored numerous journal articles including “Dental and oral considerations in pediatric celiac disease,” published in the Journal of Dentistry for Children. Ellen is the coauthor of several dental online continuing education courses.
Sara Karlin, DDS, is a board-certified pediatric dentist working as adjunct faculty at Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health and in private practice in Phoenix. She is a nationally invited speaker and the primary author of “Dental and oral considerations in pediatric celiac disease,” published in the Journal of Dentistry for Children. Dr. Karlin is coauthor of a variety of online continuing education courses for oral health-care professionals.