Expectant moms with cavities need to pay extra attention to their baby's oral health if they deliver by C-section.
Researchers say the risk starts before the mother even has a cavity. By eating sugary foods her mouth releases a bacteria that eats away at her teeth causing cavities. This bacteria is passed along on to the baby, however babies are exposed to good bacteria in the birth canal that helps them resist infection later in life. Babies born by C-section don't get this dose of good bacteria and are therefore more likely to have a life-long risk for cavities.
Researchers say the study mainly looked at low-income moms who had poor oral hygiene. Larger studies are needed to confirm the results.Researchers say mothers who have many cavities and deliver by C-section should tell their dentist so he/she can be aware of the increased risk for cavities. Babies born naturally can fight the cavity bacteria because they were exposed to "good bacteria" in the birth canal. The increased risk in babies born by C-section is life-long.
The study was conducted on women in Birmingham, Alabama.