Dental Sealants: Does My Child Really Need Them?

Did you know that dental sealants are a perfect way to keep cavities away? One of the effective ways to keep your child from developing cavities is to teach them good oral hygiene. Children should learn oral hygiene practices like flossing and brushing twice a day early in life. 


Another perfect way of keeping cavities at bay is by dental sealants. Sealants protect the vulnerable parts of the teeth. They prevent cavities from forming on the surface of the teeth. Most often, dentists apply them at the back of the teeth.


What Is a Dental Sealant?

Dental sealant is a slim plastic coating applied to the surfaces of teeth. Dentists apply them to the teeth at the back of the mouth to prevent cavities and tooth decay from forming. Upon application, the sealant is quick to bond with the teeth. It goes into the grooves and depressions of the teeth. It creates a shield over each tooth, covering over the enamel. 


Why Have Dental Sealants in Place of Brushing?

As much as you can teach your child good oral hygiene, it is possible that brushing cannot reach some parts. These hard-to-reach parts of the mouth can develop cavities. You can have your child get dental sealants to prevent this from happening. Children should still practice good oral hygiene even after getting sealants.


How Do You Apply Dental Sealants?

Dentists find sealant application easy. They brush the sealant onto the enamel of the teeth to be sealed. The sealant quickly bonds to the teeth, and it hardens. The plastic sealant bonds to the grooves and depressions on the teeth. It acts as a shield between the teeth and plaque. During routine visits to the dentist, they will examine the sealant. They will reapply sealants to the worn-out ones.


How Long Do They Last?

When the sealant remains intact, the teeth have protection. It will protect against decay and cavities for a long time because it can withstand chewing and brushing. They can last several years before they need reapplication.


How Safe Are Dental Sealants?

Dental sealants are a very safe treatment. They do not cause damage to your child in any way. Unless your child has allergic reactions to plastic, you should not be worried. Dental sealants contain bisphenol A, also known as BPA. 


Although large amounts of bisphenol A are harmful, dental sealants only have trace amounts. You will find more bisphenol A mixed with other substances than you will with dental sealants.


When Should My Child Get Sealants?

Usually, children between six to 14 years receive dental sealants. The first molars grow out at age six, and the second molars erupt at 12. When your child gets dental sealants for these teeth, it protects them from decay. Baby teeth with deep grooves can also have dental sealant applied to them.


For more on dental sealants for children, call Reaves Dental at (315) 736-0139 to reach our office in New Hartford, New York.

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