Why should parents consider dental sealants for their children? Sealants are plastic coatings that are thin and applied on the chewing surfaces of the molars. Parents can get sealants put on their children’s teeth in clinics, dentist’s offices, and even in schools. Getting the sealants is simple and painless because they are just painted on as a liquid and harden quickly to form a shield over the tooth. Their primary function is to seal out tooth decay from the mouth of the child.
Getting dental sealants is a simple process which first begins by cleaning the tooth. The cleaned tooth is dried and cotton is placed around the tooth to ensure it remains dry. The surface of the tooth needs to be roughened a little and therefore a solution is applied to the tooth. Sealants stick easily to a rough surface.
The tooth is again rinsed and dried and fresh cotton is put around it to ensure it remains dry. This is extremely important before the application of the sealant liquid because most sealant failures are attributed to this reason.
Finally, the dental sealant is applied to the teeth in a liquid form and hardens within a few seconds to leave it in place.
As mentioned earlier the most important reason for considering dental sealants is to prevent tooth decay. Fluoride in drinking water and toothpaste can protect the smooth surfaces of the teeth but the molars need additional protection. The sealants cover the chewing surfaces of the molars to keep out germs and food.
Having sealants applied on the tooth before tooth decay occurs because a plaque attack can save time and money in the long-term by avoiding the need for fillings, crowns or caps for fixing decayed teeth.
Children should be getting them on their permanent molars as soon as they erupt before tooth decay attacks them. Children get their first molars between the ages of five and seven and the second permanent molars erupt between the ages of 11 to 14. Other teeth with pits and grooves may also need to be sealed. Young adults and teenagers that are prone to tooth decay may also need them.
The dentist in North Highlands believes it may be a good idea to have a child baby teeth sealed if they have deep pits and grooves. Baby teeth can save space for the permanent teeth to develop and therefore it is important to maintain their teeth in healthy conditions to ensure they don’t fall out easily.
The application can last for up to 10 years. However, they need to be checked during regular dental checkups to make sure they haven’t chipped or worn away. Sealants can be repaired by the dentist or dental hygienist by applying more sealant material.
Sealants have been around for over 50 years but unfortunately, many people do not have information about them. The development of sealants was the result of research conducted by the National Institute Of Dental and Craniofacial Research and Others and they have proven themselves as safe and effective.
Fluoride toothpaste and drinking fluoridated water can help to protect the teeth from tooth decay. You can inquire with the dentist in North Highlands about toothpaste containing fluoride and whether your drinking water has fluoride in it. If the water is not fluoridated you may inquire about other varieties of fluoride that can safeguard your child’s teeth and act as a measure of smile protection.
Besides getting sealants it is suggested that children be taught to brush and floss properly and taken for six-monthly dental checkups without exceptions because it is the best way to prevent tooth decay and cavities in the teeth.