As a parent, you’ll do anything in your power to protect every aspect of your child, including his or her oral health. That’s why the first time you discover that your little one has a cavity, it hurts and worries you. But your State College dentist says that you don’t have to constantly endure the feeling that you can’t protect your child. There is a way to have peace of mind through using dental sealants. Learn more about how they work and can benefit your child’s oral health as you continue reading.
What are Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants are plastic coatings that are usually placed on the chewing surface of the permanent back teeth to help protect them from decay. They are used because brushing and flossing can’t always get into the nooks and crannies to remove debris.
Thus, a dental sealant is applied for increased protection. Once added, the material quickly bonds into the depressions and grooves of the teeth, forming a protective shield over the enamel. Thus, it is harder for bacteria to penetrate and cause havoc.
Who are Sealants for?
Sealants are usually recommended for children for several reasons:
- Subpar Oral Hygiene – They tend to struggle with their oral hygiene, either because of poor technique when cleaning their teeth or failure to maintain consistency.
- Poor Eating Habits – Although you may teach your child about the importance of eating healthy, you can’t be around all the time to monitor his or her activities. Therefore, the extra bite or two of sugar that you’re not around to catch could have an effect on their teeth.
- A Strong Start – Another reason that sealants are used is to ensure that your child has the best oral start possible. This is important given that many people’s dental woes begin in their childhood.
How are Sealants Added?
The process for adding dental sealants is simple, painless and fairly quick. These are the steps:
- Initial Cleaning – The process starts with cleaning the affected teeth.
- Drying – Then cotton or some other type of absorbent material is placed around the tooth to keep it dry.
- Preparation – Next, an acid solution is applied to the chewing surfaces of the teeth to roughen them up, which helps the sealant bond.
- Final Rinse – Afterwards, the teeth are rinsed.
- Adding the Sealant – The final step is for the sealant to be painted onto the tooth enamel, where it bonds directly and hardens.
After the procedure is done, you can feel more comfortable in knowing that your child is protected and on track for a healthy oral future. To learn more about the process or schedule a consultation, just reach out to your dentist in State College today.
About the Author
Dr. Chris Devlin earned his DMD from the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine. Inspired by his childhood orthodontist, he enjoys interacting with little ones and providing the best care possible in a safe and calm atmosphere. Dr. Devlin practices at Chris J. Devlin D.M.D., P.C. and can be reached for more information through his website.