Paediatric dentists said parents often assume that baby teeth are not permanent and so do not require as much care.
In fact, at least half of Singapore's pre-schoolers - children aged six and below - have tooth decay, said paediatric dentist Badrun Nafis from Thomson Paediatric Centre (Katong).
Worse, 38.4 per cent of the pre-school population have severe early childhood decay, he said.
Dentists say parents should take their children to a dentist by the age of one and use the right fluoridated toothpaste. Children should also not be allowed to fall asleep with a bottle containing sweet liquids such as formula milk and juice. Breast milk and fresh milk have weak sugars and do not often cause cavities.
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