Along with appropriate use of fluorides, sealants have made a major impact on efforts to reduce tooth decay. The grooves and pits on back teeth are very difficult to keep clean and free from bacteria and food. A sealant covers and protects the grooves and pits on the chewing surfaces. Sealant material is a resin. Sealants are typically applied to children’s permanent first and second molars (which have more grooves, pits and fissures than primary molars) as a preventive measure against tooth decay. It is more common to seal “permanent” teeth rather than “baby” teeth, but every patient has unique needs, and the dentist will recommend primary sealants and/or sealants on permanent bicuspids on a case-by-case basis.
Your child's sealants will typically last 3-5 years. Chewing hard items (crunching ice, popcorn seeds, chewing on fingers/pens) may wear the sealant and decreased their lifespan. We will check your child's sealants at their regular exams to ensure they are still intact. If the sealant needs touched-up or re-sealed we will make you aware of this.