Most people experience a cavity at some point. Even with brushing and flossing every day, plaque can take over your teeth.
Kids are especially vulnerable to decay in their baby teeth, which isn’t good for their dental health. So what can you do to help your baby avoid painful cavities in their teeth?
At Woodland Lakes Dental Studio, our team is dedicated to keeping your smile looking beautiful and healthy. Dr. Gabriel Polo is our skilled dentist who specializes in all types of treatments, including dental sealants, to keep your mouth healthy. He provides care to both adults and children, which makes taking care of the dental health of your entire family much easier.
What is a dental sealant?
You’re born with 20 teeth in your gums that will break through in the first few years of your life. These teeth are very important to the development and spacing of your adult teeth that eventually come in after the baby teeth are lost. That’s why dental health, even in babies, is so important.
Dental sealants are used to help protect your baby or adult teeth from decay. The most vulnerable teeth are those most commonly used for chewing, which are your molars and premolars. These teeth are filled with grooves in their surface, making them prone to plaque and decay.
A sealant is a very thin coat of plastic that goes over those teeth to protect them from the things that cause cavities. Because the grooves in your chewing teeth can be very deep, the sealant provides extra protection to spots that are hard to get with just your toothbrush.
What to expect from the procedure
Getting dental sealants is actually pretty quick and painless. There are a few steps to the process of applying the sealant to protect your teeth, which involves:
- Thoroughly cleaning and drying your teeth
- Applying an acid solution to roughen the surface of the teeth
- Rinsing and drying your teeth
- Applying the sealant to your teeth
Once we apply the sealant, it immediately adheres to the tooth and creates a barrier against plaque. The sealant is hard and can last up to nine years, or whenever your baby’s tooth falls out. It’s still important to brush your baby’s teeth gently to prevent the non-sealed teeth from decay.
The whole procedure only takes a couple minutes per tooth and your baby’s teeth will be protected on the chewing surface. Not every child needs dental sealants, but we can help you determine if it’s an option for your baby.
Does your child need a sealant?
Your adult teeth have these grooves in them, and so can your baby’s teeth. Since children and babies don’t have perfect dental hygiene, it can make their teeth especially susceptible to decay. For this reason, we may recommend getting sealants placed on your baby’s molars.
The sealants make the surface of your baby’s molars smoother, which makes it harder for plaque to get stuck and decay to start.
Even though your baby will eventually lose them, it’s still important to protect their baby teeth as they are the precursor to the adult teeth they’ll eventually get.
Caring for your baby’s teeth
Along with sealants, there are some other steps you can take to help care for your baby’s teeth. Here are some tips to keep cavities away:
- Don’t let them sleep with a bottle
- Use an infant toothbrush
- Floss when their teeth begin to touch
- Teach them to spit when they are old enough
You can also ask us about other treatments, such as fluoride, that help protect your baby’s teeth from decay. The more steps you take to keep their teeth healthy at a young age, the better dental health they’ll have in the future.
If you think you or your baby needs dental care or may benefit from sealants, call our office in Conroe, Texas, or book an appointment online today.