Why You Should Love Dental Sealants

Why You Should Love Dental Sealants
Posted on 09/21/2016

Dental Sealants in Pediatric Dentistry

If you could protect your kids from getting cavities wouldn't you want to?

Yes, I am a dentist, but I'm also a patient! I have had a history of terrible cavities and root canals and crowns. Let's be honest, dental work is uncomfortable and not everyone's favorite thing to do. So if it's that difficult for adults, how much more challenging is it for children?

Some Children Are Lucky, But Most Get Cavities

Some people are genetically inclined to having very deep grooves in their molars. That's just the shape of their teeth. Some children can have the best sonic toothbrushes available while never consuming sugar, but still get cavities. Then there are other children who have genes that will allow them to stay cavity-free for life.  The latter is quite unusual though. So to take good care of your child, and make it less likely she or he will form cavities, why not seal off the grooves of the teeth where cavities most often form?

That's why I am a believer in sealants. That said, we understand that some people are still tentative to trust dental sealants as a part of their child's pediatric dentistry care. So to help quell any residual hesitation, below we will go over some facts about dental sealants, as well as discuss the process through which apply it during dental check-ups.

Helpful Facts About Dental Sealants

  • Sealants are very safe. I have had patients come to me with concerns regarding Bis-phisphenol A (or BPA), an ingredient in plastics that can interrupt the hormones of kids, especially in girls. Fortunately, that material has been removed from sealants for over 20 years. At Yummy Dental and Orthodontics for Kids, we do not use any dental products with BPA. Sealants are made froms a material similar to resin that flows into the crevices of the chewing surface of teeth.

  • Sealants are very effective. They are considered the best protection you can give your child against cavities. Sealants actually at the very top of the checklist of requirements on the back to school forms that are mandatory for K,2, and 6th graders in Illinois.

How We Apply Sealants

  • We gently clean the teeth with a rotary toothbrush, then place what we call "blue shampoo" that we leave on for 20 seconds and rinse off. That makes the surface of the tooth squeaky clean.

  • Then we place the sealant on the teeth.

  • Then we dry the sealant using a visible light.

  • The procedure typically takes only 10-20 minutes depending on how many teeth we are sealing and how cooperative the child is.

  • Children can eat right away afterward. The only restriction is not to have sticky or hard foods for the day.

  • Sealants routinely last about 2-3 years, especially for children who don't chew ice or grind their teeth.

  • And if you child is a teeth grinder the sealants protect the enamel from permanent damage.

Schedule Your Child's Next Dental Appointment

If it's been more than six months since your child has been to a pediatric dentist and had dental sealants applied, you might want to consider scheduling an appointment. As one of Chicago's leading pediatric dentist offices, Yummy Dental & Orthodontics For Kids offers fantastic dental care for children in a friendly and comforting environment. As stated before, we highly encourage this type of dental treatment, and hope to see you all soon!