- Protect Your Family’s Teeth from Cavities
- What is a Dental Sealant?
- Do I Need Dental Sealants?
- What Can I Expect?
- Benefits of Dental Sealants
- Children and Cavities
- Get the Protection of Dental Sealants
Protect Your Family’s Teeth from Cavities
Your teeth are meant to last for a lifetime. Unfortunately, most teeth end up damaged by tooth decay. Although it is preventable, 42% of children under the age of 11 and 95% of adults have had at least one cavity. 90% of cavities occur on the chewing surfaces of the molars because let’s face it, they can be pretty difficult to clean. The small, hard-to-reach crevices easily trap food particles that erode your enamel. Your dentist in River Oaks can help protect your family from tooth decay with dental sealants.
What is a Dental Sealant?
Your teeth are composed of three layers: the enamel, dentin, and pulp. Every day, your enamel is ambushed by harmful sugars and bacteria that erode the hard-outer layer of your tooth. Without the right oral hygiene habits and care from your dentist, a small hole can form, called a cavity.
A dental sealant is just a thin, clear layer of plastic-based material that coats a tooth to create a protective barrier between the enamel and bacteria. It only takes minutes for them to be applied and the process is painless. After just a few minutes you and your loved ones can reduce their risk of tooth decay by as much as 81% when applied to the molars.
Do I Need Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants are most often recommended for children. Typically, they are applied between the ages of 6 to 14 during routine appointments, but you are never too old to benefit from their protection. Patients of all ages can help preserve their teeth with dental sealants.
What Can I Expect?
Dental sealants are a basic service offered during semi-annual visits for a cleaning and checkup. As a result, many insurance companies cover a portion of their cost, but it depends on your individual policy. We help you maximize the value of your benefits to ensure you can protect your family’s smiles for minimal out-of-pocket expense.
After we clean the teeth and perform our checkup, a weak acidic solution is applied to the molars to help create a secure bond between the sealant and the enamel. A clear coating is applied and hardened using a special light. The sealants are made from a clear material, so it blends in with the enamel.
On average, dental sealants last for about 10 years before needing to be replaced. They are durable, so they can withstand normal chewing. The right oral hygiene habits at home and visiting the dentist twice a year for preventive care can help promote their longevity. We check the sealants during each visit to ensure they are undamaged. We can easily replace them if one is compromised.
Benefits of Dental Sealants
Despite being widely used for children, dental sealants are effective on patients of all ages, especially those who are prone to cavities. Sealants cover the chewing surfaces of the teeth to help patients avoid tooth decay, making them an ideal part of a preventative dental care plan. Additionally, sealants are applied in a simple, convenient, and painless procedure, which is helpful for reducing dental anxiety in younger patients. Dental sealants can also save you money over time by helping you avoid cavities and the dental work that is needed to treat them.
Children and Cavities
The following can increase a child’s risk of developing cavities:
Poor oral hygiene: Children and teenagers may not be brushing and flossing their teeth thoroughly, which can leave behind bacteria and plaque, putting them at risk of cavities.
Limited exposure to fluoride: Fluoride is essential for strengthening the teeth by remineralizing the enamel. When used in appropriate amounts, it can prevent tooth decay. Children and teens with low levels of fluoride intake could experience more cavities over time.
Low saliva: Saliva is essential for oral health because it can protect the teeth from decay. If your child or teen experiences dry mouth, their teeth may develop cavities.
Sugary diet: Sugar plays a major role in the health of your teeth. Unfortunately, high amounts of sugar can be found in many foods and beverages, including cakes, sticky candies, sodas, fruit juices, sauces, yogurt, and various packaged foods. Bacteria in the mouth interact with sugar that is consumed, creating harmful acid. This acid compromises the tooth by creating holes in the enamel.
Get the Protection of Dental Sealants
If you or your child are ready to benefit from the protection of dental sealants, it is time to contact our office to make an appointment. We look forward to creating generations of healthy, cavity-free smiles.