Your child’s first permanent molars erupt around the age of 6 and the second permanent molars erupt around age 12. These teeth have significantly more pits and grooves compared to the rest of the teeth because the molars are used for chewing.
However, this uneven surface makes it more difficult to thoroughly remove food particles and bacteria which can result in food particles lingering on these teeth for longer which increases plaque and acid attacks which erode the enamel and lead to cavities.
An effective prevention tool is to have these teeth sealed with a covering made of composite resin which acts as a barrier between your tooth enamel and harmful substances such as bacteria and acids.
The sealants also provide a smoother surface for these teeth so that they are easier to clean. The sealants are clear and blend in with the teeth. The procedure is non-invasive, painless, and prevents 80% of cavities in the first 2 years of placement. Contact us at Maple Grove Pediatric Dentistry to schedule a consultation.
Dental sealants last for a variable amount of time depending on how well they are cared for. Individual differences in lifestyle, oral hygiene, diet, and frequency of dental visits result in differing lifespans.
While they are durable enough to last for up to 10 years, they can become damaged, dislodged, or wear away within 2 to 7 years. This is why it’s important to get frequent checkups so your dentist can check on the condition of your sealants and let you know if they need to be reapplied.
Yes, dental sealants are completely safe despite some health concerns about exposure to BPAs. While BPA levels in your child’s saliva will peak about 3 hours after placement, they return to normal within just 24 hours.
The ADA has stated that there is no evidence to suggest that BPA exposure from dental sealants has caused any adverse health effects. Dental sealants prevent the need for more invasive treatment that may require exposure to harsher chemicals than the minuscule amount of BPAs found in dental sealants.
Yes, most dental insurance plans cover preventive treatments at 80 to 100% of the cost. Dental sealants are considered a preventative treatment that preserves your child’s oral health and seals out tooth decay that would require more expensive and invasive treatment. Contact your insurance provider directly to find out how much of the dental sealant treatment they will cover.