Associate Professor Stephen Hsu

Associate Professor Stephen Hsu from the Faculty of Dentistry and fellow researchers from the Singapore Institute for Clinical Sciences of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research have discovered that infants with eczema were three times more likely to develop tooth decay at 2 and 3 years of age. The discovery was published in the The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in January 2017. A/P Hsu believe tooth decay is highly preventable as the discovery could provide parents and caregivers of babies with eczema early warning of tooth decay development. As a result of this knowledge, more regular dental check-ups on these babies will prevent the development of tooth decay.

This is an important discovery as the skin condition eczema affects one in five school-going children here. And from the 2009 Faculty of Dentistry study, 40 percent of preschool children in Singapore suffer from tooth decay. The team has identified structural defects during tissue development as a possible reason for the link between eczema and tooth decay.

The Straits Times carried a report of this discovery on 24 January 2017:

Associate Professor Hsu was also interviewed by the BBC News on 30 January 2017 on the recent discovery.

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