As parents we understand your concern about your children getting cavities. Encouraging to brush and floss properly and regular visits to the dentist can certainly help in developing good oral hygiene in your kids. While brushing alone can help remove food particles and plaques that linger on the smooth surfaces of teeth, toothbrush alone may not be able to get into the deep grooves and nicks. So here’s a deeper question: How do you tackle the issue? Are dental sealants the solution? Should your child get one?
Allow us to answer to that and many other questions regarding sealants.
Sealants are thin, liquid plastic coating applied on the chewing surfaces of teeth, typically the back teeth or premolar and molars. The sealant is designed to quickly dry into a hard shield over the teeth enamel to prevent the fissures and depression from attracting bacteria and therefore protect a child’s teeth from decay.
Why use sealants?
According to a recent survey, nearly 70 percent of kids in the U.S. are affected by dental decay and considering the very fact, sealants are quite handy. Children between the ages of 6 to 12 are perfect candidates for the treatment, since this is when their premolars and molars begin to emerge. Sealants act as a blockade and protect these vulnerable areas by sealing out food and plaque.
How are sealants applied?
Sealants are easily applied and take only a few minutes to seal each tooth. The dentist thoroughly cleans the teeth that will be sealed with the help a dental drill to open the grooves and determine if decay is present. The chewing surfaces are then roughened with an acid solution to help the sealant sticks to the teeth and then painted on the tooth. Once it bonds directly to the tooth and hardens, your child is required to avoid chomping on ice or chewing hard or sticky foods that could dislodge the sealant. The treatment is a quick and painless process.
Sealants can protect the tooth surface and significantly decrease the risk of decay for several years as long as they remain intact. They are 100% effective in protecting tooth surfaces form cavities and hold up well for a decade, before reapplication is needed. The protection may reduce or lost when part or the entire bond is broken, but clinical studies have shown that teeth that lost sealants are no more susceptible to decay.
Research has shown that the likelihood of developing fissure decay begins at much early years of life. The children and teenagers are definite candidates and one must be ready to live by other key ingredients in preventing tooth decay and maintaining good oral hygiene by:
- Brushing with fluoride toothpaste and flossing twice a day.
- Consuming nutritional well -balanced diet and healthy snacks
- Seeing the dentist periodically.
If you have still have concerns about whether your child should get sealants, do get in touch today to schedule a consultation.