Dental caries (tooth decay) is one of the most common chronic childhood diseases. Caries prevalence in most industrialised countries has declined among children over the past few decades. The probable reasons for the decline are the widespread use of fluoride toothpaste, followed by artificial water fluoridation, oral health education and a slight decrease in sugar consumption overall. However, in regions without water fluoridation, fluoride supplementation for pregnant women may be an effective way to increase fluoride intake during pregnancy. If fluoride supplements taken by pregnant women improve neonatal outcomes, pregnant women with no access to a fluoridated drinking water supply can obtain the benefits of systemic fluoridation.
To evaluate the effects of women taking fluoride supplements (tablets, drops, lozenges or chewing gum) compared with no fluoride supplementation during pregnancy to prevent caries in the primary teeth of their children.
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