ADA Releases Caries Management Guideline

Dentistry Today


The ADA Council on Scientific Affairs and the ADA Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry have released the “Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guideline on Nonrestorative Treatments for Carious Lesions.” It is the first in a four-part series on caries management. 

For this series, the Council and the Center convened a panel of global dental experts to review the best available scientific evidence and develop high-quality recommendations for managing caries.

The guideline summarizes the most effective non-invasive and micro-invasive treatments to arrest or reverse both noncavitated and cavitated carious lesions on primary and permanent teeth. It encompasses nine treatments, including but not limited to sodium fluoride varnish, sealants, resin infiltration, and silver diamine fluoride (SDF) across 11 recommendations.

Also, the guideline provides the first ADA recommendations on the use of SDF since it was cleared for use as a desensitizing agent by the Food & Drug Administration in 2014.

“This guideline series represents the first comprehensive evaluation of treatments for all phases of the caries disease process,” said Rebecca Slayton, DDS, chair of the expert panel. “With this first chapter, we hope and anticipate that the guideline’s decision pathways will guide clinicians and lead them to improved outcomes for patients.” 

The ADA will release the additional guidelines in the series in 2019 (caries prevention), 2020 (restorative treatments for carious lesions) and 2021 (carious lesion detection and diagnosis). The first guideline also appears in the October issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association.

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