Benefits of Dental Sealants
Every parent knows how important it is to establish proper oral hygiene habits at home when children are still quite young. But what happens when your child develops a cavity despite avid brushing?
Unfortunately, it is possible due to narrow grooves and pits located on molars, or back teeth used heavily to chew. If a significant amount of plaque or food particles build up in these fine spaces, harmful cavities will form.
Dental sealants are a pain-free method of preventing this from happening altogether. Our Grandville pediatric dentists apply the colorless sealants to your child’s back teeth, allow them time to harden or bond to each tooth, and it’s done!
Keep reading to learn more about what dental sealants are and how they can benefit your child in the long run.
What are Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants are best explained asthat are painted or brushed onto a patient’s molars. The entire procedure is painless and your child should not experience any discomfort afterward.
Before sealants can be applied, each tooth will need to be cleaned and dried. An acidic gel will then help roughen up the tooth surface so a strong bond will form between the tooth and the sealant.
Our dentists will leave the gel on for a few seconds before rinsing it off, drying the tooth again, and applying the sealant. The magic happens when a special blue light is used to harden the sealant. This forms a firm barrier that food particles, bacteria, and acids are not able to cross.
Protect Hard to Reach Areas
Because the pits or grooves on molars are so narrow, the bristles of a toothbrush are often unable to reach inside to clean. Even if your child brushes their teeth thoroughly at least twice a day, they still may be at risk for cavities.
Sealants accomplish what toothbrushes can’t by acting as an invisible shield that covers the entire chewing surface of a tooth. As long as the sealant itself remains intact, the tooth it is covering will avoid decay.
Long-Lasting Cavity Prevention
The wonderful thing about dental sealants is their lifespan. If your child continues to take good care of their teeth after application, they can last up to 10 years.
Sealants hold up very well under the force of normal chewing which is why several years can pass before they become less effective. If our pediatric dentists notice that your child’s sealants have worn down, they can reapply them to extend the cavity protection.
Think about it this way: the application of sealants can prevent cavities and are much less expensive than dental fillings. Your child will thank you later!
Stop Early Stages of Tooth Decay
Dental sealants prevent cavities from forming in the first place. But did you know they can also be placed over areas exhibiting?
Yes, sealants also work to stop existing decay from worsening. Should early decay arise during a checkup, our dentists will discuss the use of sealants with you. If applied, they will monitor the tooth in question over time and the clear nature of sealants allows them to easily do this.