You might have heard about dental sealants from other parents. These are a quick, easy and inexpensive solution for preventing dental caries (cavities). Dental sealants are made of a special kind of plastic material and are placed in the fissures and grooves of the tooth’s chewing surface. The teeth at the back are going to especially benefit from sealants because toothbrushes can’t clean these teeth thoroughly due to their location and position in the mouth.
Children need dental sealants as they are particularly bad brushers. The American Dental Association recommends that once a child’s first primary tooth has erupted, he or she should receive a dental sealant. But even children with primary teeth can also get sealants if they don’t have great oral hygiene habits, are genetically prone to cavities or do not have easy access to dental care.
Before applying dental sealants, our pediatric dentist will first examine the teeth for any signs of decay. Then the teeth are prepared using a cleaning/etching solution. The mouth is then thoroughly rinsed and the teeth are dried. The dentist will then coat the teeth with sealant, which hardens using a curing light.
According to a spokesman for the American Dental Association, Jonathan Shenkin, resin-based sealants can lower one’s risk of cavities by as much as 80%. Dental sealants can last for a decade but they need to be checked by a dentist regularly.