Are Dental Sealants Safe for Children of Any Age?
Are you looking for a way to protect your child's teeth from cavities?
A little less than an hour east of Atlanta, pediatric dentists Dr. Jeni Kong and Dr. Sandra Oh apply dental sealants for children at Apple Tree Pediatric Dentistry in Lawrenceville, GA. Dental sealants can help ward off cavities on healthy teeth – and they're considered painless.
Below, we'll take a look at why Dr. Jeni and Dr. Oh recommend dental sealants for children.
What are the benefits of dental sealants?
The majority of cavities occur in our permanent back teeth. And, according to the CDC, sealants protect against 80% of cavities for two years (and 50% for up to four years) after their application. This saves millions overall in cavity care.
Sealants are made of a thin, pliable plastic material that a member of our team paints onto the surface of molars and premolars (the permanent back teeth). The solution is designed to get down into the grooves of teeth, which creates a hard barrier to prevent bacteria from penetrating tooth enamel and causing decay.
Dental sealants don't last forever, but you can continue to get them applied to your teeth as long as the tooth is healthy. You don't want to put a sealant on a diseased tooth since you'll trap bacteria inside.
What's the right age for a child to get dental sealants?
Usually, the best age to get sealants is when a child's adult molars grow in. Most sealants are applied to children's molars at age six and then again on their premolars at age 12 (since those take longer to grow in). However, in some limited cases, Dr. Jeni or Dr. Oh may recommend sealants on baby molars.
During your child's dental cleanings, our team will inspect their teeth and monitor their growth, letting you know if it’s time to consider sealants.
What are the benefits of getting dental sealants for children?
Children don't always have the best oral hygiene routines since they're still learning to care for their teeth and gums. And they're more likely to indulge in sweets without considering the long-term consequences. Dental sealants help protect their permanent teeth from these early bad habits.
Depending on a person's diet and oral care routine, dental sealants can last up to ten years. Over time, they wear down as we chew and brush our teeth. But if you continue to schedule regular dental appointments, sealants can be reapplied before they wear down completely.
Are dental sealants safe for children?
It's important to discuss any concerns you have about dental sealants with our doctors. However, the American Dental Association and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have determined that dental sealants are a safe and effective way to help avoid cavities. While they are made of plastic, the benefits far outweigh the risks, even for children as young as six.
Can anyone get dental sealants?
Dental sealants can only be applied to healthy teeth. Otherwise, you risk trapping plaque beneath the sealant. Adults can get sealants if their teeth are healthy, but over time, even those of us with impeccable dental care routines will experience some tooth decay.
However, if you keep up with sealant application and have them applied regularly before decay occurs, you can continue to get sealants to help prevent cavities on your molars.
Get dental sealants for your child in Lawrenceville, GA
If you live in or around Lawrenceville, GA, or locations east of Atlanta, visit board-certified pediatric dentist Dr. Jeni Kong or pediatric dentist Sandra Oh and their team at Apple Tree Pediatric Dentistry. Scheduling an appointment for your child today and ask about dental sealants to help prevent cavities.