A manual on the prevention and management of early childhood caries (ECC) was published in 2019 by WHO.
The manual is based on evidence from systematic reviews and WHO recommendations, especially those relating to nutrition, breastfeeding, and primary care workers’ programmes. It focuses on tackling ECC in its global context by defining the disease, outlining the known risk factors, and describing approaches to prevention and treatment. Using the primary health care approach, it aims to inform and support, policy-makers on the justification and needs for ECC interventions, and chief dental officers and key decision makers in the development and implementation of plans for ECC prevention and control. The manual can also be used as a training resource for primary health care teams.
The charity was pleased to support the activities that provided a sound basis for the development of this guidance; these included a WHO expert consultation, jointly funded with Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand, and a systematic review of ECC conducted through the WHO Collaborating Centre for Nutrition and Oral Health at Newcastle University. The guidance will inform and support health decision makers in their efforts to address this important public health issue. It could prove to be particularly valuable in low- and middle-income countries where the prevalence of ECC is increasing rapidly. The manual has recently been made available in French, Spanish, Russian, and Chinese which can be found here.