Protect Children’s Teeth from Cavities with Dental Sealants

Protect Children’s Teeth from Cavities with Dental Sealants

June 8, 2021

The dentist in North Port, FL, recommends children brush their teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, floss at least once, and limit frequent snacking on sugary foods and beverages to prevent tooth decay. However, children are not diligent with their dental hygiene and food habits and are prone to the chronic condition of dental cavities.

Untreated cavities are painful, and the infection causes issues among children when eating, learning, and sleeping. Children often report lost school time because the conditions require them to spend more time with the emergency dentist in North Port seeking treatment for dental problems. Thankfully another remedy is now available with dentists as it has been for over 60 years in the form of dental sealants protecting children’s teeth effectively from cavities.

Grown-ups who want to protect their teeth can inquire about dental sealants for adults with the dentist near them if they are not affected by any dental issues or have fillings on their teeth. However, adults are at a disadvantage because their exposure to decay increases with age, and the protective quality and biochemistry of their saliva changes because of certain medications over time. Adults are also candidates for dental sealants so long as they have unrestored teeth.

Dental Sealants Explained

Dental sealants are thin layers which when applied on the chewing surfaces of the molars, prevent cavities for many years. Sealants act as a protective barrier on the chewing surfaces from holes by blocking out microorganisms and food. After application, sealants offer protection against 80 percent of cavities for a couple of years and continue the protection against 50 percent cavities for another four years.

What Is Better Sealing a Cavity or Filling It?

A cavity causes permanent damage to a tooth by creating a hole. When left untreated, the cavity gets bigger and painful besides remaining infected. The most familiar places for cavities to develop are on the grooves of the molars.

If you need your child’s cavity filled, you must take them to Paul Stein to undergo the filling procedure expensively and time-consuming. On the other hand, dental sealants are a quick, easy, and painless way of preventing cavities to leave your child’s tooth more robust and healthier than it would be with the filling or untreated cavity. The cost of getting dental sealants is more affordable and more straightforward than getting dental fillings.

At What Age Should Your Child Get Dental Sealants?

Dentist 34287 recommends children have dental sealants painted on their teeth soon after their permanent molars emerge in the mouth at around six years for the first molars and 12 years for the second.

You may think your child is too young to undergo the dental sealant procedure. However, it could help if you understood the process is entirely painless, and besides causing minor jaw discomfort, your child isn’t likely to experience any pain. Applying dental sealants requires only a few minutes as the targeted tooth is cleaned and dried to prevent salivary contamination. An etching gel is applied to the tooth for a few seconds before it is rinsed and dried. Finally, the dentist paints the dental sealant on the child’s tooth and shines ultraviolet light to harden the sealant forming a protective shield.

Dental sealants are tooth-coloured or slightly tinted and are not visible on the child’s teeth when talking or smiling. Sealants are incredibly thin and fill the pits and fissures of the teeth. Sometimes children may feel the sealant with their tongue for a short while after placement.

Dental sealants are durable and remain on the teeth for nine years after placement. However, they do tend to fall off and need checking at regular dental appointments. If your child’s tooth loses a sealant, the protective shield is lost forever, and the tooth is prone to getting cavities. Thankfully missing sealants are comfortable to replace.

What Other Measures Help Children Prevent Cavities?

Besides getting dental sealants for your child’s teeth, it helps if you ensure supervision of your child when brushing and flossing to make sure they are indulging in the habit as recommended by the dentist. Limiting children’s dietary habits and preventing frequent snacking on sugary foods and beverages is also beneficial. Taking children to visit the dentist every six months for exams and cleanings also helps prevent tooth decay. Preventing cavities requires a concentrated effort from you, your child, and the dentist allowing them to have stronger and healthier teeth.