Sealants are a very common dental treatment recommended for children to protect the areas of the teeth that are the most vulnerable. They help prevent tooth decay in the newly erupted premolars and molars that will stay with your child for their lifetime. Sealants are placed in the deep grooves and pits of the teeth where plaque can hide. Most children, no matter how well they brush, are unable to reach and clean these areas properly. The sealant acts as a barrier and seals out food and bacteria. This helps prevent cavities! Your dentist and dental hygienist will inform you of when your child’s adult teeth are ready for sealants.
Sealants are placed easily and painlessly with one short appointment. The procedure involves preparing the tooth with a bonding agent and then applying a flowable sealant into the grooves. A light is then used to harden the sealant. The sealants normally last for many years; however, it is important that your child avoid hard or sticky foods such as ice, taffy, or hard candy. Your dental hygienist will recheck these areas at each check-up.
Most insurance companies will cover sealants for your child. Just ask your dental hygienist about your dental coverage. In any case, sealants are much more affordable and comfortable than filling a cavity in the future!