How Dental Sealants Help Protect Your Teeth

pediatric dentist wayland mi

How Dental Sealants Help Protect Your Teeth

pediatric dentist wayland mi

Brushing your teeth, using a fluoride mouthwash, and flossing regularly are great habits to keep up your dental hygiene. You may even be limiting the amount of sugary/acidic drinks and snacks you consume to save your enamel. Despite all your effort, are you still getting cavities? You may want to look into dental sealants.

What Are Dental Sealants?

They are a transparent resin that are painted onto the molars after they are cleaned and dried off. Sealants are an extra layer of protection that can dramatically reduce the likelihood of developing cavities.

According to the CDC, 9 out of 10 cavities occur in the back teeth and dental sealants can protect against up to 80% of cavities for the first two years after application, and remain up to 50% effective for up to four years after that.

This happens because food particles get stuck in places that are harder to reach with a toothbrush or floss so bacteria grows more easily causing cavities. However, dental sealants fill in those places making it harder for bacteria to grow and damage teeth.

Can Anyone Get Dental Sealants?

Yes, anyone can get them. It is most common for children to get them, especially those around age 6 or whenever their premolars erupt. They can be reapplied when the permanent molars come in around ages 11 to 13.

Applying dental sealants to a child’s new premolars will help them maintain good oral health. Kids are most susceptible to cavities when premolars erupt partially due to being less likely to properly take care of their teeth than adults are.

Kids get distracted easily and may not have the attention span to brush their teeth for the whole two minutes. If you’re having difficulty with this try playing music or make a game out of brushing their teeth. Maybe there’s even an app that helps keep your child focused while they brush their teeth.

How Long Do They Last? 

Dental sealants can last up to 10 years! To maximize their lifespan you should avoid biting down hard on ice, hard candy, and unpopped popcorn kernels because these can wear down the sealant especially fast. It is also a good idea to limit the amount of chewy/sticky candy as these may pull the sealant out over time. 

While none of those are strictly off limits, we recommend limiting them to help your dental sealants last longer. It is important to note that dental sealants are not a substitute for brushing and flossing your teeth. Regardless of whether or not you have them, it is incredibly important to keep up your dental hygiene.

There is no recovery time from getting dental sealants. After the dentist paints them on, they will harden them with a special light. Then you can eat and drink immediately after the procedure is done.

Ready to Make Your Appointment?

Our dentists in Cascade, Coopersville and Wayland want to help protect your teeth from cavities/tooth decay, and dental sealants are a great way to do that. To schedule an appointment with Robinson Dental, call any of our offices.