By the age of 7, most children start to lose their baby teeth and instead develop their adult teeth. Children are particularly sensitive to various dental problems because their teeth are naturally more sensitive than adult teeth. For that reason, you might want to consider dental sealants for kids to make sure your child’s teeth are protected for many years to come.
But what are dental sealants and why are they so important in the realm of pediatric dentistry? Keep reading and discover the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about dental sealants for kids.
What Do Dental Sealants for Kids Do?
The main purpose of a dental sealant is to protect a child’s teeth. As mentioned before, children’s teeth can be quite sensitive to damage, especially cavities. Cavities are little spots of decay that start out as white or gray spots on the teeth, but if left untreated, they can become brown or black holes in the teeth that cause a lot of pain and also damage the tooth.
If a child sustains a lot of dental damage at a young age, that child’s teeth won’t be in great shape as an adult and, most likely, that child will have to deal with a lot of dental checkups and maintenance as an adult. Of course, making sure your child brushes their teeth can help prevent this. But even so, your child may still develop cavities.
This is especially true if your child often eats sugary things like candy or sticky substances that stick to the teeth. When you seal a tooth, that sealant essentially acts as a shield. That way, there won’t be any piece of food that can pierce that sealant and affect the child’s teeth.
This will greatly reduce your child’s risk of developing cavities along with several other dental problems. However, getting dental sealants for your child does not mean that your child’s teeth are invincible. Your child will still need to brush and floss their teeth on a regular basis.
However, these dental sealants can help ensure that their teeth remain in good shape until they reach adolescence. That way, your child won’t have to deal with a bunch of cavities at one time which may very well permanently damage the child’s teeth in the future. Dental sealants are more or less an extra protective measure to ensure that a child’s oral health stays in good shape for many years.
Are Dental Sealants Painful?
As a parent, you might be wondering if getting your child dental sealants will hurt them. The short and simple answer is no. This procedure shouldn’t cause your child any discomfort.
Dental sealants are made out of plastic. When the dentist applies the sealant to the teeth, it will be somewhat gel-like in consistency.
Then, as the dental sealant dries, it will become solid. Dental sealants are usually only ever applied to the backs and tops of a child’s teeth. This is because the backsides and tops of teeth don’t often get enough attention.
This is also where particles of food often get stuck which, of course, will then lead to tooth decay and cavities. In some cases, gum disease can also develop if proper dental hygiene is not followed. Whatever the case, once the plastic sealant finally settles, it will be a very firm solid on the backs of the teeth.
What You Need to Know
Neither the application process nor the setting process will be painful for your child. Your child may feel some pressure as the dentist applies the sealant, but that’s about it. If anything, your child may be anxious about the procedure, especially if they are very young.
If this is the case with your child, it is important to advise them that getting dental sealants is a very easy and painless procedure. It is also important to tell them why they are getting these sealants and how helpful they can be in keeping their teeth healthy.
Most high-quality pediatric dental services are trained to deal with children who may be afraid of certain dental procedures. So, even if your child is afraid or nervous, the dentist should be able to make your child feel as comfortable as possible.
How Do Sealants Look or Feel?
A lot of parents wonder if dental sealants will make their child’s teeth feel thicker. This is often the case since, after all, the teeth will have an extra layer of plastic on them. However, this extra layer should not be too uncomfortable for the child.
The child may notice that their teeth will feel a bit smoother and thicker than usual. The indentations between their teeth may also feel more prominent. But other than that, the presence of dental sealants should not affect the child in any significantly negative way.
But what about the appearance of the sealants? Usually, these sealants are unnoticeable to most people. If anything, the sealants might cause a white cast or tint on the teeth, but that’s about it.
Once your child gets dental sealants, they can easily last for a whole decade, so you won’t need to worry about replacing them for a long time.
All About Dental Sealants for Kids
Dental sealants for kids are important for a variety of reasons. Most importantly, they are designed to keep cavities and tooth decay at bay by creating a plastic shield over the child’s teeth.
To learn more about how this procedure works and determine whether it’s right for your child, contact us here.