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Dental sealants are a major weapon in a dentist’s arsenal in the battle against dental decay. Dental sealants act as a shield for a molar’s surface, stopping decay before it can begin.
What Are Tooth Sealants?
A tooth sealant treatment consists of a special plastic material applied to the chewing surface of the molars, which have many indentations. The sealant is clear or white, so it blends in naturally. The sealant creates a smooth surface that prevents food and bacteria from becoming trapped in the indentations, where it would eventually cause cavities. After the painless treatment, children typically have about 50 percent fewer cavities.
What Are the Steps of the Tooth Sealant Process?
When the dental sealant procedure begins, the tooth or teeth are cleaned and dried. Next, the chewing surface is roughed up slightly to allow the sealant to adhere securely to the tooth. After a second washing and drying, the sealant is brushed directly on the grooves and pits of the molars. The sealant dries quickly; some dentists use a curing light to harden the sealant. The process is faster than having a tooth filled and it won’t cause anywhere near as much anxiety in patients.
How Much Will I Pay for Dental Sealants in Virginia Beach?
Your total dental sealants cost depends on how many teeth you or a child is having sealed. The cost may also depend on the sealant used. Often, dental insurance companies will cover dental sealants since they help prevent more costly procedures in the future. Contact our office to request an appointment and we will let you know what you will pay for a sealant dental treatment.
Can Adults Benefit from Dental Sealants?
While many adults get their children’s teeth sealed, they don’t realize that dental sealants for adults provide the same benefits as sealants for children. Adults without fillings or decay in their molars can help keep them healthy by having a dental professional seal off the chewing surfaces to keep bacteria at bay.
Why Do Dentists Recommend Dental Sealants for Children?
Children don’t always do a good job brushing their teeth, despite your best efforts as a parent. If a dentist applies a sealant to molars and premolars as soon as they come in, the teeth are protected from decay before it has a chance to start.
Dentists also recommend dental sealants for baby teeth in children prone to cavities. While baby teeth eventually fall out, a cavity can cause your child pain or result in an infection. If you would like to talk to one of our dentists to determine if your child’s baby teeth could benefit from sealants, contact our office to schedule a consultation.
Are Sealants Safe?
Since sealants can last for up to 10 years, parents often want to know if they are safe for their children. Dental sealants have been preventing cavities since the 1960’s and research by the American Dental Association has proven dental sealants are safe for children and adults.
If you have any questions or you would like to discuss sealants with a dentist, call our office to schedule an appointment.