Sealants are thin layers of a special coating that we brush into the deep grooves and fissures of molars (your back teeth.) Sometimes we use them on the premolars (bicuspids, which are in front of your molars) too.
Although adults can opt to get sealants at any time, our Claremont family dentist recommends sealing all permanent molars as soon as they’ve erupted enough. This means the “six-year molars” (first molars) and “twelve-year molars” (second molars,) which erupt around the same respective ages, give or take a year or two.
Adding dental sealants onto your child’s checkup is easy, because it only takes a couple of minutes per tooth. Sealing their permanent molars as they gradually come in will help your child clean those areas more effectively with a toothbrush and lower their chances of getting cavities.
However, sealants do not replace flossing! It’s important to clean between your teeth every day in addition to brushing.
The Sealant Placement Process
Getting a sealant doesn’t require any type of numbing or invasive techniques. Rather, Dr. Syed or one of our hygienists in Claremont, New Hampshire will simply need to isolate and dry off the tooth. After applying a conditioner to roughen the outer enamel, the sealant material flows into place and is cured with a light. Within a matter of seconds, a firm protective coating has blocked off all of the deep fissures.
The great news is that most dental insurance plans cover preventative sealants at 100%, up to a certain age (usually 14.) But if you don’t have dental insurance, sealants are still quite affordable, especially when it means preventing having to pay for a filling later on!
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