How Do Dental Sealants Protect My Child's Oral Health?

How Do Dental Sealants Protect My Child's Oral Health?

You watch in wonder as your child grows, and it seems like there are changes almost every day. Part of this exciting process is witnessing your child’s baby teeth fall out to make way for their permanent teeth, which are designed to last a lifetime. To give these new teeth the best start possible, dental sealants should be part of their early oral care.

At Hillsdale Dental Care, our experts in pediatric dentistry include Drs. Magdalena Azzarelli and Roge Jacob, along with our experienced and compassionate dental team. We understand the importance of early dental care for your child’s teeth. From caring for your child’s baby teeth to protecting their permanent teeth right from the start, we’re here every step of the way.

While teaching your child how to care for their teeth is paramount, why not add another layer of protection with dental sealants? Here’s how they work.

What are dental sealants?

When your child’s permanent back molars begin to come in, we can use dental sealants to provide an added layer of protection. The sealant is made up of plastic, mostly. We simply apply the liquid sealant on the tooth and it hardens in place in just seconds.

Once dry, the protective, clear varnish that we create with dental sealants acts as a barrier between harmful bacteria and your child’s teeth for the first few years.

This process is quick, easy, and completely painless, making it a much easier trip to the dentist than one where we have to place a filling.

Where we use dental sealants

We mainly apply dental sealants to the chewing surfaces of your child’s molars and premolars. These teeth are not only in full contact with food (and bacteria), they also feature tiny pits and fissures that are hard to access and clean. As a result, bacteria can set up shop and start to eat away at your child’s new teeth, creating cavities that require dental work.

Do dental sealants work?

While brushing and flossing are still the best ways to prevent cavities in your child’s teeth, dental sealants can also make a huge difference. To give you an idea, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that dental sealants can prevent 80% of cavities for the first two years and continue to protect against 50% of cavities for up to four years.

To further support the use of dental sealants when your child’s first molars come in, the CDC also reports that children ages 6-11 without sealants have nearly three times more first molar cavities than those with sealants.

What these numbers tell us is that dental sealants are exceptionally good at keeping cavities at bay, giving kids the best start in their oral health.

To provide your child’s teeth with superior protection, please contact our office in San Jose, California, to set up an appointment for dental sealants.

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