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Are Dental Sealants Right for Your Kids?

Finding long term solutions for our children’s dental health presents a unique challenge. Beyond teaching them good oral hygiene habits and taking them for regular dental checkups, are there ways that concerned parents can give their children additional protection from cavities? While brushing and flossing your teeth regularly are the most effective ways to combat cavities, dental sealants are the best option to provide extra protection for your child’s teeth. But what exactly are dental sealants, and how exactly can they help fight cavities?

Dental sealants are a thin protective coating applied to the rough top surfaces of the back molar teeth. This coating prevents food particles from getting caught within the crevices of your children’s teeth.  It is the food impaction in these crevices that cause many cavities. The protective coating preserves the enamel from the reaction caused by the combination of food particles and cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth. Dental sealants are made from materials specifically biocompatible with teeth and are very safe and durable.

If you decide that dental sealants are right for your child, the sooner the sealants are applied, the better. Sealants last for up to 10 years before a reapplication is necessary. Throughout your regular checkups, your dentist will check on the sealants and look for signs of decay and if it needs reapplication. 

The initial application process is a painless procedure. Your dentist will clean and dry your teeth and then apply a gel to help roughen up the tooth surface so that your child’s teeth forge a stronger bond with the sealants. After a few seconds, the dentist will wash off the gel and then apply the sealant.  A blue UV light is used to harden the sealant and finish the process. As for potential side effects of having a dental sealant applied? In rare cases, you can be allergic to the material used in the sealant, but it subsides as soon as it is removed. 

Teenagers and adults can also have dental sealants applied to their teeth, but as we mentioned, the earlier the better. Sealants will not prevent cavities forming in between the teeth, which is why brushing and flossing your teeth are still necessary in reducing cavities. However, dental sealants can provide excellent additional protection for teeth in the fight against tooth decay.

Looking for a children’s orthodontist in Mercer County, NJ, or for an orthodontist offering clear braces in Mercer County, NJ? Look no further than Hamilton Dental! Contact our team to schedule an appointment today!