Dental sealants are one of the best ways to prevent cavities from forming. They consist of a layer of plastic resin. This resin is applied to your child’s teeth in a liquid form. Then, after it’s applied, the resin is activated with a UV light, and it hardens into a protective plastic barrier.
This barrier prevents cavities by protecting your child’s enamel from direct contact with food particles, bacteria, and oral acid. Because these particles cannot touch the enamel directly, they are unable to damage the enamel and cause tooth decay.
At Cavity Patrol Pediatric Dentistry, we offer sealants for kids of all ages. Dr. Julia and Dr. Chun can ensure your child’s mouth stays healthy and cavity-free. Contact us now to schedule an appointment.
Dental sealants are almost always covered by dental insurance for kids under the age of 18.
Dental sealants are usually applied after a six-month cleaning and oral exam. Your child’s hygienist in Cypress or Katy will scrape away plaque and bacteria, buff their teeth with a high-powered toothbrush, and floss their teeth. Then, Dr. Julia or Dr. Chun will examine their mouth and check for signs of decay.
Once their mouth has been cleaned, Dr. Julia or Dr. Chun will prepare the teeth for sealants using a special type of acid. This acid roughens the enamel slightly without damaging it. This is done to ensure the liquid resin can bond tightly to your child’s tooth.
When the tooth has been prepared with dental sealants, Dr. Chun or Dr. Julia will apply a layer of resin to the tooth, and then activate it using a UV light. This hardens the resin, sealing the tooth. This process will be repeated for each tooth that is being treated.
Dental sealants can last anywhere from 3-10 years depending on how well they’re placed, and the oral hygiene habits of your child. They are very long-lasting, so they’re a great option for kids of all ages.
Some things can shorten the lifespan of sealants. Regularly chewing very hard foods like ice, nuts, and popcorn kernels with the rear teeth can cause them to wear down more quickly.
Your child should also get a night guard if they grind their teeth at night, as grinding can damage sealants and also cause premature wear and tear to their enamel.
There is no need for your child to avoid eating or drinking directly after treatment. After their sealants are applied in our Cypress pediatric office, they can resume their normal day-to-day diet right away.
However, there are some foods your child should avoid to keep their sealants intact, such as very hard foods like popcorn kernels, ice, and jawbreakers. Very gummy and sticky foods like taffy, gummi bears, and Starburst should also be limited or avoided, as they can cause sealants to fail prematurely.
Dental sealants are protective barriers made of a composite resin material or glass ionomer cement. This material is painted onto the grooves of the back molars and cured with UV light. The sealant is tooth-colored and blends in with the surrounding natural teeth.
However, it makes the chewing surfaces of teeth smoother and fills in pits and grooves to prevent the trapping of food particles and bacteria. The procedure only takes a few minutes and is minimally invasive. No local anesthesia is required, as the process is painless.
To schedule an appointment for dental sealants, contact us at Cavity Patrol Pediatric Dentistry. Dr. Julia or Dr. Chun will make your child feel comfortable and the treatment will be over before they know it. They’ll leave the dental office with healthier, more protected teeth that are less vulnerable to cavities.
Dental sealants protect teeth from cavities and tooth decay by limiting their exposure to bacteria, providing a smoother surface on the tooth for better cleaning, and preventing pits and grooves from forming in the teeth.
Cavities develop when bacterial plaque feeds off of sugars that were left behind in the mouth and turns them into acids that erode tooth enamel. The rear molars are more susceptible to decay because they have more grooves and fissures that can trap food particles and can be difficult to clean thoroughly.
When sealants are applied to these teeth, the surface of the tooth is smoother, reducing the number of pits in the teeth that can trap food and bacteria. The procedure is minimally invasive, quick, and cost-effective.
Sealants offer 80% protection against cavities for the first 2 years and 50% protection for 4 years. Children without dental sealants are three times as likely to get cavities than children who do have sealants.
Since children are more prone to tooth decay, dental sealants are an excellent preventative method that offers significant protection at little cost. Unchecked tooth decay can cause severe oral health problems that require complex, expensive, and invasive dental treatments. By applying dental sealants with our Cypress office, you save yourself time, money, and your child’s future oral health.
If your child’s first or second permanent molars are coming in, this is the perfect time to have dental sealants applied. We recommend getting dental sealants as soon as these permanent molars come in because of the pits and grooves on these teeth and how difficult they are to reach and thoroughly clean.
By having sealants applied as soon as these teeth come in, they prevent future risk of oral health problems such as cavities and tooth decay. Sealants are also great for children who suffer from dry mouth. Inadequate saliva production increases the risk of developing cavities.
While all children can benefit from dental sealants, children who have a higher risk of tooth decay are great candidates.
They can also be used on already existing cavities to prevent the decay from extending any further. Regular preventive dental visits to our Cypress or Katy pediatric offices are important to make sure that the teeth are healthy and the sealants are still intact. Over time, sealants can become worn down, chipped, or cracked and may require replacement.
1 in 5 children between the age of 5 and 11 have at least one untreated decayed tooth.