Dental sealants are one great defense against tooth decay or cavities. Tooth decay is one of the more common problems that dentists encounter. According to the CDC, around 90% of adults over the age of 20 will experience a cavity in their lifetime, and many adults will experience more than one. Tooth decay often begins…
Do Children Need Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants protect against tooth decay. They serve as barriers that prevent acids made by oral bacteria from reaching chewing surfaces. Tooth decay occurs when these acids get to attack teeth structures for prolonged periods. It is the top reason that people seek the services of a dentist.
How children benefit from dental sealants
Dental sealants are primarily used to protect the developing teeth of children. Compared to adult teeth, baby teeth come with thinner enamel, making them more vulnerable to decay. Their permanent teeth also have thin enamel when they first erupt, and it can take years for them to become as thick as a fully grown adult’s enamel.
Also, children do not always brush their teeth with the best techniques, and they are more likely to leave areas in the back of their mouths uncleaned. These molars come with deep fixtures and grooves that serve as perfect hiding spots for oral bacteria to convert food particles into acids that damage teeth.
Covering these teeth with sealants prevents these acids from making contact with biting surfaces. Protecting baby teeth against decay is critical because these teeth serve as placeholders for the permanent teeth that come after them. Baby teeth falling out prematurely often leads to orthodontic issues as the child gets older.
Protecting a child’s teeth with dental sealant is a non-invasive procedure that does not require making permanent changes for the patient. There is no need for local anesthetics because the patient does not feel pain as the dentist works.
The procedure starts with the dentist cleaning and drying the patient’s teeth. An etching acid is then used to roughen these teeth, so the dental sealant adheres better to them. The patient’s teeth are cleaned and dried once again, before being painted with the varnish-like sealant. Ultraviolet light is used to harden the material, completing the process. It provides protection against tooth decay for up to five years.
Dental sealants are safe for children and side effects are extremely rare. They are made out of medical-grade resins that are similar to the composite resins used for dental bonding. The main difference is the liquid nature of sealants. They are typically applied to teeth using a small brush and seep into the micro-crevices and grooves on teeth. Benefits of protecting a child’s teeth with dental sealants include:
- Sealants protect teeth from decay for up to five years
- More sealants can be applied to previously treated teeth as needed
- Dental sealants help prevent the premature loss of baby teeth
- Sealants can lower dental bills over time
Good oral hygiene helps increase the longevity of dental sealants. It also protects teeth against tooth decay.
Protect your child’s teeth
Dental sealants help prevent acids made by oral bacteria from damaging your child’s teeth. It can protect teeth for up to five years, and follow-up treatments can be performed as needed. Call or visit our Columbia clinic to set up an appointment with our dentist.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Dental Sealants in Columbia, SC.
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