While brushing and flossing are the best ways to prevent cavities and tooth decay, it’s not always easy to clean every nook and cranny, especially for children. For instance, back molars are susceptible to early decay, as they have fissures and grooves that house leftover foods and bacteria. Thus, dentists agree—when it comes to helping prevent the formation of cavities in children and adolescents, dental sealants provide a safety net against decay (Mouth Healthy).
The Centers for Disease Control supports the idea of dental sealants, particularly for children ages 6-11. Astoundingly, the CDC reported in 2016 that, “school-age children without sealants have almost three times more cavities than children with sealants.”
To better understand how dental sealants work, consider what happens when bacteria already present in the mouth mix with food particles. When combined, an acid forms that wreaks havoc on tooth enamel. Ultimately, the acid creates holes, or cavities in teeth. Yet, when sealants are applied to the biting surfaces of back teeth, for instance, this creates a protective shield against the effects of acid.
Given that a child’s first molars appear around age 6, it’s best to inquire about dental sealants for your child earlier than later. This gives baby teeth a chance to remain cavity-free from the start, and it also saves time and money in the long run. When 12-year molars appear, dental sealants can be re-applied for added protection.
The process of placing dental sealants is quick, easy and painless. A tooth is first cleaned and dried. Next, an acidic gel is applied to the tooth. This gel mixture roughens the texture of the tooth, so that the sealant material adheres appropriately. Once the tooth has been cleaned and dried again, the dental sealant is “painted” onto the biting surface of the tooth, filling in the tiny grooves and uneven places. Finally, a special light is used to harden the sealant.
We Help Put Your Child On The Road To Excellent Oral Health
At Precision Digital Dentistry, we make every effort to put your child on the road to excellent oral health, and this includes a routine age one dental visit. In other words, children who grow up going to the dentist regularly are more likely to take better care of their teeth as adults. Therefore, by the time the first molar appears, we can apply dental sealants and ensure that your child’s teeth remain healthy and strong.
Contact Precision Digital Dentistry today to schedule an appointment for your child.