What Are Sealants ?
Sealants are a safe painless, and low cost way to help protect your childs teeth from decay. Sealants have been used on childrens teeth for more than 20 years. A thin plastic tooth colored or clear coating bonded to the chewing surface which forms a hard shield that keeps food & bacteria from getting into tiny grooves in the teeth causing tooth decay.
Why Should Children Have Sealants ?
The chewing surfaces on back teeth have tiny grooves that form as each tooth is develops.
This is where most decay occurs in children. That's because toothbrush bristles can't get down into the grooves to remove food and bacteria trapped there.
Which Teeth Should be Sealed ?
Usually the molars and premolars are sealed.
Fluoride helps protect the smooth surfaces on the front teeth and on the sides of the back teeth. But only sealants can keep food and bacteria from getting into the grooves on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.
When Should Children Get Sealants ?
Sealants should be applied as soon as the first permanent molar (6yrs molars) erupts(come in)
This occurs between 5 and 7 yrs of age.
The second molars (12yrs molars) and premolars should be sealed as soon as the erupt, between 11 and 14yrs of age.
How Long Do Sealing Take ?
Generally, all the back teeth can be sealed in one 30-60-minute office visit.
Will Insurance Cover Sealants ?
Many dental insurance plans cover all or part of the cost of sealants for children. check with your insurance company for details.