What are Dental Sealants?
You have heard of dental sealants before, but what are they anyway? And why should you consider dental sealants for your kids? The chewing surfaces of back molar teeth naturally have grooves, or pits and fissures in them. These grooves are often smaller than a single bristle from a tooth brush. Because of this, it is very common for people to develop cavities when these grooves are left unprotected because they are so challenging to really keep clean, especially for children. A dental sealant is a plastic material that is placed in the pits and fissures, or grooves of the chewing surfaces that helps protect the molar teeth from decay along these surfaces. They are done very quickly, and easily, and are relatively inexpensive. The sealants act as a barrier between the teeth and food and plaque.
Who should get dental sealants?
Children have not mastered the dexterity needed for truly brushing their back teeth. The American Dental Association and the Center for Disease Control strongly recommend sealants for children as soon as their molar teeth are erupted, and the dental professional has access to them. It is also common that adults may have new sealants placed when old ones have cracked or become worn down, or when they are especially prone to tooth decay. There are even times when your dentist may recommend that sealants be placed on baby teeth.
How effective are dental sealants?
Dental sealants are extremely effective. Multiple studies have shown over the past many decades that sealants can reduce cavities by nearly 80%, immediately and up to 60% for four years or longer. They can last for anywhere from 5 to 10 years, but they should also be checked during regular visits to the dentist. If the sealant is worn or chipped, the sealant can be repaired or replaced.
How can I get sealants for my child?
Your dental office should advise you when your child is ready to get sealants. At Cornerstone Dental Arts providing sealants for children is something they have believed in since before they first opened their doors in 1988. If you are looking for a good dentist, Cornerstone Dental is accepting new patients, and they would be more than happy to evaluate your children and see if they are ready for dental sealants. Call 865-531-7177, or click here to request an appointment.