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Seal Out Tooth Decay

January 6, 2017

Candy, sugary snacks, soda, and even everyday food and drinks can cause tooth decay if your little ones aren’t properly caring for their teeth. Germs use the sugar in what we eat to create acid that leads to cavities over time. Since our back teeth are rough and uneven, the grooves and pits make it easier for food and germs to stick and develop into cavities. While regular brushing and flossing helps to clean our mouth of harmful germs, sealants are one of the best ways to combat tooth decay.

Dental sealants are thin, plastic coatings that are painted onto the chewing surfaces of our back teeth. This coating provides extra protection to our back teeth, which saves time and money in the long-run on fillings, crowns, and other restorative procedures. Children should get sealants on their permanent molars as soon as possible to protect their molars from decay:

  • “The 6-Year Molars” – These permanent molars typically come in between the ages of 5 and 7.
  • “The 12-Year Molars” – The second permanent molars usually erupt between ages 11 and 14.

Some sealants can last up to 10 years, however they usually need to be retouched or replaced every 2 to 5 years to ensure they’re able to fully protect the teeth. The dental sealant process is quick and easy!

  1. The tooth is cleaned
  2. The tooth is dried and cotton is used around the tooth to keep it dry
  3. A solution is used to make the tooth surface rough so that the sealant can stick
  4. The tooth is cleaned and dried again
  5. The sealant is applied as a liquid and hardens within seconds
  6. The sealant is complete

While sealants are a great way to help protect your children’s new, permanent molars, it’s still critical that they keep up with regular brushing and flossing. To learn more about the benefits of dental sealants, ask Dr. Maggie at your next appointment!

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