While cavities can occur at any age, they are most prevalent in school-aged children. In fact, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry warns that “tooth decay has become epidemic among our youngest children. a rapid form of tooth decay, known as early childhood caries (eCC), is the most common disease faced by young children— and it’s on the rise.” The AAPD goes on to suggest that childhood tooth decay can also impact a child’s oral and general health as well as their social and intellectual development.
Considering the prevalence and seriousness of cavities in children, it is understandable why routine preventive pediatric dental care includes dental sealants. While diligent oral hygiene, smart dietary choices and regular visits to the dentist are important in the prevention of early childhood caries, dental sealants offer a whole new level of protection.
How Do Sealants Work?
Dental sealants have been used for over 30 years. They can be used in adults who are especially prone to cavities, but they are especially beneficial to young children. A dental sealant is a thin plastic coating that is gently applied over the surface of posterior (back) teeth. The tooth-colored resin material fills in deep grooves and fissures of the molars, creating a smoother chewing surface where bacteria and food debris can no longer accumulate. If your child is not yet proficient or diligent in their brushing habits, a dental sealant can be the perfect weapon for fighting decay.
Protection for Your Teeth and Your Wallet
By getting sealants, you are not only saving your child’s teeth from damage, but you are also saving your wallet. A dental sealant can cost between $25 and $50 per tooth, but a single dental filling can be a $200 expense. In addition, sealants are quick and completely painless to apply and they last between 5 and 10 years. Cavity repair, on the other hand, requires a longer appointment, anesthetic injection and permanent alteration to your tooth structure.
To learn more about the benefits of pediatric dental sealants, call Grateful Dental. We love doing our part to protect growing smiles!