All About Dental Sealants for Kids – What Parents Need to Know
Dental issues are very common for young children. They can be lazy about dental care, they don’t have refined motor skills yet, and they eat whatever they want. Must be nice right? Therefore, it’s your job as the parent to encourage them to practice good oral hygiene. We all know this can be a low priority at times, yet have great long term health benefits for your kids. Whether you are accustomed to monitoring their brushing, helping your younger children brush and floss, or even control what they eat at times, it’s a lot of work. In addition to those, it’s also your responsibility to look into dental treatments that will help with your child’s oral health. As experienced pediatric dentists we know it’s a challenge and there is no judgement in our fun, healthy environment should a child develop a cavity. SO, today we want to discuss the benefits of dental sealants for kids.
One of the recommended treatments for kids who are prone to tooth decay is the application of dental sealants. However, despite being an available and recommended option, studies show that this is one of the most under-used treatments in pediatric dentistry. At Surfside Kids Dental, we are happy to say it it a practice all of our offices use to protect your children’s teeth.
If you’re not completely aware of the value of this treatment, listed below are facts that you need to know — all about dental sealants for kids.
- Dental sealants are plastic materials that function like a covering for teeth to prevent cavities. It is placed in the pits and fissure of the chewing surfaces of teeth, particularly the molars at the back, which are often difficult to reach with a toothbrush.
- Children are the best candidates for dental sealants. Apart from being candy- or sugar-lovers, they can’t be expected to be meticulous with oral hygiene. Dental sealants are best for when they start getting their permanent teeth.
- Dental research reveals that dental sealants are 80% effective in reducing cavities during the first year of application, and 60% effective for four years or more.
- Sealants are considerably affordable; they can cost as low as $40 per tooth but they can last up to 10 years, so they’re quite worthy dental investments considering their efficacy.
- Sealants can wear down over the years, though; so be sure to have your child’s dentist regularly check how they are holding up to ensure that they’re doing the job of preventing cavities.
- While there’s still debate over how safe dental sealants are mainly due to how the resin used contains compounds that turn into BPA (which is a hormone disruptor connected to behavioral problems in babies) upon contact with saliva, most dental professionals claim that proper application outworks the risks posed by BPA. Scrubbing and rinsing sealants after application can eliminate 88% to 95% of the compounds that turn into BPA. Therefore, if there truly is exposure to BPA, dental professionals say it’s minimal and will not cause health and developmental issues.
If you’re interested in this treatment,or you think your child might be a candidate for dental sealants let us know. As you discuss it further with your child’s pediatric dentist, you can make a completely informed decision in protecting your child’s teeth.