Doctors are expected to urge the government to consider placing cigarette style warnings on packets of sweets to help reduce child obesity.
One suggested warning which could be included is: ‘Sugar can contribute to obesity and the need for fillings.’
A third of children in the UK aged between 2 and 15 are now either overweight or obese, while in the last two years 34,000 children under the age of nine have had teeth removed.
Dr Latifa Patel, said: ‘We want healthier children and we need a long-term policy.
‘We are hoping for the same sort of affect that warnings on cigarette packets have had on smoking.
Since warnings on cigarettes were made compulsory in 2008 it is believed the number of adults smoking in the UK has decreased from 21% to 16%.
According to health professionals, tooth decay is the number one reason why children are admitted to hospital and need general anaesthetic.
Dr Patel believes the warnings would be welcome by the sweet industry commenting:
‘Even confectioners, I presume, have a responsibility – just like the smoking industry – to make sure their products are consumed in a responsible manner.
‘So, I think confectioners will like having warnings on their sweets about sugar content and advice to brush your teeth after.’