Dental sealants are like a raincoat for your teeth! Cavities are most commonly found on the back teeth of children, so sealants are painted onto the chewing surfaces of the back molars to act as a protective coating. Sealants help protect teeth from the bacteria and acidic environment of your mouth and help defend your child’s smile against developing cavities.
Applying Dental Sealants
The dental sealant application is easy, comfortable, and completed within just a few minutes. Your dentist will first clean and dry the tooth to prepare for the sealant application. Next, the sealant will be painted on and will flow into the pits and grooves of the tooth’s chewing surface. The application is completed by drying the sealant onto the tooth with a special light. This application typically takes place during a regular cleaning or exam appointment, and your child will be able to eat after the application. Your child’s dentist will check the sealants during their bi-annual cleaning to ensure the sealants are still effective or to see if they need repair or reapplication.
How are Dental Sealants Helpful for Kids?
Although they do not guarantee that your child will not get a cavity, dental sealants are an effective way to decrease the risk of tooth decay. Sealants are highly recommended by the American Dental Association because of their effectiveness. Dental sealants reduce the risk of cavities by 80% in the first year after application and by 60% in the next 4 years. Sealants are both safe and effective to protect those nooks and crannies in your child’s teeth.
Dental Sealant FAQs
Are Sealants Covered by Insurance?
Yes! Dental sealants are covered by most insurance companies under preventative care. Coverage may vary from company to company, as some companies have age limitations or only cover certain teeth. Your pediatric dentist and insurance company will be able to guide you in the right direction for dental sealant coverage and cost of dental sealants for your child.
Do Sealants Need to be Reapplied?
In some cases, sealants may need to be reapplied. Your child’s dentist will check sealants during a regular exam to see if they need to be repaired or reapplied. Our dentists guarantee sealants for 3 years, and will repair or replace, if needed, at no cost within those 3 years.
Should my Child Continue to Brush and Floss After the Dentist Applies Sealants?
Yes! Sealants are an effective way to decrease your child’s risk of cavities, but the ultimate way to protect your child’s teeth is to continue practicing good oral hygiene at home. Brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and using a fluoridated mouthwash are essential in maintaining a healthy smile. Remember to schedule regular visits with your pediatric dentist to stay on top of any potential dental issues.