Dental sealants are an excellent method for cavity prevention for children with emerging molars and adults. Deidra Kokel, DDS has more than 26 years of experience applying sealants to that provide a line of defense against cavities, above and beyond what brushing and flossing can do. To schedule an appointment for your or your child at her practice in Leesburg, Virginia, call or click today.
A dental sealant is a protective plastic coating that goes over the chewing surfaces of the teeth, most commonly the molars (back teeth). In addition to routine brushing and flossing, dental sealants act as an additional line of defense against the development of cavities.
Most tooth surfaces are smooth, and you can clean them thoroughly by brushing and flossing. The tops of your molars are uneven and contain grooves and pits too narrow to reach with a toothbrush, making it easy for food particles and bacteria to take up residence in your molars and cause cavities.
Sealants smooth the top of your molars to prevent cavity-causing substances from settling in. This dental service benefits children and adults but works best when children’s permanent molars emerge.
Children are most prone to cavities between the ages of 6 and 14 when their primary and secondary molars emerge. Your child can have increased protection from cavities during this time if Dr. Kokel applies sealants when their molars first emerge. For most children, the first set of molars erupts at age six, and the second set erupts at age 12.
Sealants are most commonly used on permanent molars. Dr. Kokel may also recommend sealants to prevent the primary teeth from falling out prematurely if your child’s primary (baby) teeth have deep grooves.
For children of all ages, receiving dental sealants from an experienced pediatric dentist like Dr. Kokel is painless and takes only a few minutes. After cleaning your child’s teeth, Dr. Kokel applies a bonding solution and then the sealant. She quickly sets the solution using a UV light.
Sealants last for up to ten years. They’re a quick and easy way to help your child stay cavity free.
You can benefit from sealants if your molars do not have fillings or decay, or have only early signs of decay. Dr. Kokel may recommend sealants if you’re at increased risk of tooth decay for reasons including dry mouth as a side effect of certain medications.
To schedule an appointment for you or your child to receive dental sealants, call or click today.