Sealants are a simple way to guard against cavity formation (tooth decay) in children. Made of a thin, white or tooth-colored material, sealants are placed on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (molars and premolars). These preventive coatings fill the grooves that naturally occur on the chewing surfaces and block out tartar, plaque, bacteria, and food particles to protect against the development of decay. Sealants can last many years if they are cared for properly with a regular home oral hygiene habit and routine dental care at Wollaston Dental Group. Not only can sealants help to maintain the health of your child's back teeth and lower the risk of cavities, but they may also reduce the need for more extensive types of care, such as fillings and crowns. Talk to general and family dentist Dr. James McDonough during your visit at our Quincy, MA office to decide if dental sealants are needed for your family members.
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The best candidates for sealants are patients who are prone to developing cavities. Most often, sealants are suggested for younger children and teenagers who may have a more difficult time effectively cleaning their teeth at home. Sealants are most often applied to fully erupted permanent molars and premolars as these teeth are more susceptible to developing decay due to the pits and fissures that naturally occur here. Sealants are not ideal for teeth that already have decay or existing restorations. The application of dental sealants is a simple, fast treatment that usually does not require sedation or anesthesia, making it an easy procedure for individuals of all ages.
What to Expect
During your child's consultation, Dr. McDonough will perform a thorough examination to decide if sealants are the right treatment for their needs. Before applying sealants, we will clean the teeth to remove bacteria, plaque, and tartar. A small brush will then be used to apply the sealant material (which begins as a liquid) to the chewing surfaces. Once placed, the material will be "cured" or hardened to the tooth with a special light. After the application, our team will ensure that the sealants have settled into the correct position and are providing a comfortable bite.
After the appointment, your child should be free to resume normal activities. However, we recommend that they avoid chewing on sticky, crunchy, or hard foods for the next few days. It is important for your child to follow a regular home oral care plan, including brushing at least two times each day and flossing daily. With proper care, sealants may last for several years. During your child's future dental examinations at Wollaston Dental Group, Dr. McDonough will let you know if the sealants need to be reapplied.
Dental sealants are a preventive treatment and are covered for children by many dental insurance plans. Coverage can vary, especially in older patients, so we will talk with your insurance representative to learn about your family's benefits and let you know of any anticipated personal costs. Wollaston Dental Group accepts an array of payment methods, including medical financing through CareCredit®.
Dental sealants are one of the preventive measures we proudly offer to help protect your family's smiles against tooth decay. For many patients, sealants can reduce the need for future oral problems that require more extensive treatment, such as fillings and crowns. As a quick and easy procedure, sealants at Wollaston Dental Group can help your family experience easier dental visits and improved overall health. If you would like to learn more about dental sealants, contact our Quincy, MA office to schedule an appointment with Dr. McDonough.