Cavity Prevention in Children with Dental Sealants

Brushing and flossing your teeth can remove food particles and plaque from the flat surfaces of your children’s teeth, but you won’t always be able to reach all of the nooks and crannies of your back teeth. By “sealing out” plaque and food, dental sealants protect these sensitive regions from tooth disease. Sealants should be applied to children’s permanent molars and premolars as soon as they emerge. Dental sealants can thereby protect teeth from cavities throughout the cavity-prone years. To prevent dental decay, sealants are a thin covering coated on the biting surfaces of teeth, mainly the rear teeth. The liquid sealant forms a protective barrier over the enamel of each tooth by swiftly bonding into the pits and grooves of the teeth.

Causes of Tooth Decay

The bacterium that causes tooth decay may be found in everyone’s mouth. When you eat sugary foods, bacteria consume them and make acid, which affects the surface of your teeth (the enamel).

Minerals in saliva (spit) aid in the healing of the tooth surface. Fluoride, which may be found in toothpaste and most of Victoria’s drinking water, also aids in the recovery of damage. If there is more acid harm than can be repaired over time, a cavity or ‘hole’ occurs in the tooth surface.

Why Get Sealants?

Although regular brushing and flossing can eliminate bits of food and plaque from flat teeth surfaces, they cannot always reach all of the nooks and crevices of the back teeth. By “sealing out” plaque and food, sealants protect these sensitive regions from tooth decay.

Sealants fill in the microscopic grooves or fissures in the back teeth, preventing decay by keeping food and germs out. There are some advantages to applying sealants. They:

  • Fill and plug up the little pits and grooves in the teeth to prevent decay.
  • Only take a couple of minutes to put.
  • Do not create discomfort.
  • Do not need any injections or drilling.
  • Do not disintegrate in saliva
  • Are safe.

An oral health professional applies sealants (dentist, dental therapist or oral health therapist). They typically endure two to seven years, although they might survive much longer. An oral health specialist must examine sealants regularly.

Who Should Get Sealants?

Children and teens are prime targets for sealants due to the risk of cavities forming in the depressions and grooves of the premolars and molars. Adults without decay or fillings in their molars, on the other hand, can benefit from sealants.

Sealants should be applied to children’s permanent molars and premolars as soon as they emerge. Dental sealants can protect teeth from cavities throughout the cavity-prone years of ages 6 to 14.

Dental sealants may be used on baby teeth in specific situations, such as when a child’s developing teeth have deep depressions and grooves. Because baby teeth are vital for maintaining proper spacing for permanent teeth, keeping them healthy is critical, so they don’t fall out too soon.

What the Research Shows

According to reports, dental sealants can prevent up to 80 percent of cavities for up to two years following treatment. They also last up to four years and prevent 50 percent of cavities. According to the studies, the sealants can be kept in the mouth for up to nine years.

Dental sealants are used on about 43% of children aged 6 to 11. Children from low-income families were 20% less likely than children from higher-income families to have sealants.

School-aged children who do not receive sealants have nearly three times as many cavities as those who do. According to studies, applying sealants to the almost 7 million children from low-income homes who do not have them in school-based programs might save up to $300 million in dental care expenditures.

To ensure that the sealants do not wear away, they must be examined and maintained at routine dental appointments. Because they are technically sensitive to where they are positioned, practitioners who do not use them appropriately may not achieve the optimal results.

How Are Sealants Applied?

The sealant application is a straightforward and comfortable procedure. Pediatric Dentist Indianapolis IN will put the sealant on each tooth in just a few minutes. The steps for applying are as follows:

  • The teeth that will be sealed must first be carefully cleaned.
  • Each tooth is dried and wrapped in cotton or another absorbent substance to keep it dry.
  • An etching solution is often used to roughen up the chewing surfaces of the teeth, which aids the sealant adhering to the teeth. This step is not required with other sealants.
  • After that, the teeth are cleaned and dried.
  • The sealant is applied directly onto the tooth enamel, where it binds and solidifies.

How Long Do Sealants Last?

Sealants can safeguard teeth from decay for up to ten years, but they must be monitored for chipping or wear at routine dental visits. Sealants can be replaced as needed by your dentist. It is also possible for decay to penetrate a sealant that is beginning to fail. With the use of dental X-rays, your dentist will be able to identify and locate these regions. Before the condition worsens, the appropriate therapy, generally a new sealant or a minor filling, can be applied.

Oral Care is An Everyday Affair

Brushing and flossing are not substitutes for dental sealants. Nothing can replace excellent dental hygiene. The following items should be included in your everyday oral hygiene routine:

  • Use fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean your teeth twice a day for 2 minutes.
  • Brush and floss your teeth at least once a day. This aids in removing plaque from between your teeth, which your toothbrush cannot reach.
  • Visit Children Dental Center Indianapolis IN for a professional cleaning and checkup every six months. Children’s Dentist Indianapolis IN recommends six-monthly dental checkups because frequent dental appointments are critical for maintaining healthy teeth and gums.
  • Fluoride toothpaste should be used starting at the age of 18 months. For children aged 18 months to six years, use a reduced fluoride children’s toothpaste, and those aged six and over, use normal fluoride toothpaste.
  • Follow the Kids Dentist Indianapolis IN Guidelines and eat a diverse range of healthy foods from each of the five categories daily.
  • Limit your children’s intake of sugary foods and beverages, especially in between meals.

We hope that this article has convinced you to have dental sealants for your children. Keep reading our blogs to remain informed about similar interesting topics.