Dental sealants, made of resin or glass ionomer cement, protect the rear molars from cavity development by providing a seal against the chewing surfaces which have many pits and grooves. These teeth are more vulnerable to cavities because the deeper pits and fissures trap food particles and bacteria.
Cavities form when plaque feeds off of left behind food particles such as sugar and transforms them into acid which over time can form holes or cavities in the tooth. Dental sealants prevent food particles and bacteria from getting stuck in these grooves as well as prevent acids from penetrating the tooth’s enamel.
Contact us at Little Smiles Pediatric Dentistry serving Ashburn and Brambleton to schedule an appointment with Ashburn pediatric dentist Dr. Jonathan Konz today.
Dental sealants are clear so they blend in with your teeth.
At our Ashburn dental office, Dr. Jonathon Konz will clean and dry your child's teeth receiving the sealants.
Typically a material such as cotton is used to keep the tooth dry so saliva doesn’t contaminate the application. Dr. Konz will then etch the teeth with an acid solution to help the sealant bond to the tooth.
Our Ashburn dental team will then rinse and dry the teeth. The sealants will be painted onto the teeth with a brush.
Your child's teeth will be exposed to UV light which cures the sealants and instantly hardens them.
Dental sealants offer 80% protection against cavities for the first 4 years
Dental sealants can become chipped, worn down, or fall off over time due to wear and tear. While your sealants can last for up to 10 years, it’s a good idea to regularly monitor them during your checkups.
To keep your sealants protected and lasting for many years, make sure your child protects their teeth by wearing a mouth guard if they grind or clench their teeth at night. Your child should never use their teeth as tools or chew on ice. They should also not chew on very hard foods like hard candies.
The best time to have dental sealants placed is as soon as your child receives their first and second permanent molars. However, in younger children with significant grooves on their teeth, dental sealants may also be recommended for baby teeth.
The effectiveness of dental sealants also becomes reduced as the years go on so we recommend that you have them replaced every few years or as recommended by your child’s dentist in Ashburn or Brambleton.
School children without dental sealants are three times as likely to develop cavities.