Cavity prevention is best achieved by regular brushing, flossing, and dental checkups. These are good habits that are best set early in life. Sometimes, though, these preventive efforts are not enough, and children need some extra help. Sealants and fluoride are two ways your Lake Orion, MI, dentist can help your child maintain good oral health, offering the extra protection they need to avoid cavities.
What Are Dental Sealants?
A dental sealant is a thin, safe, and BPA-free coating made from acrylic that is applied to your child’s back teeth. Molars in the back of the mouth are notoriously difficult to properly clean because of their uneven and rough surfaces. They are the perfect hiding place for food and bacteria. The applied barrier helps protect the teeth from these cavity-causing items. Studies have shown that sealants reduce tooth decay risk by almost 80 percent in molars. And according to the Centers for Disease Control, children without sealants are three times more likely to have more cavities than those who do have these protective barriers in place.
Who Can Get Them?
Sealants are available for children and adults. However, getting them earlier is more beneficial. A child’s first molars come in around age 6, and the second set appears around age 12. Getting a head start on cavity prevention may help you save time and money, too, over the long run of your child’s oral health.
How Are They Applied?
The treatment is quick and harmless. We will clean your child’s teeth and then place an acidic gel on them. The gel creates a rough surface on the teeth so that there’s a strong bond between the teeth and the sealant. We will rinse off the gel, dry the teeth, and then apply the barrier. A blue light will be used to harden it at the end. They can last for several years, and there are no known side effects from having them.
What About Fluoride?
Fluoride is a safe and natural mineral that helps enamel, your teeth’s first barrier against cavities. This protective, external layer on your teeth can be compromised by acids produced by bacteria, which weakens it and makes it harder for teeth to remineralize, or rebuild. Our fluoride treatment can help. A topical solution is applied to the teeth, and the fluoride’s mineral strands bond to any areas of the teeth where the enamel is weak. The solution sets quickly. Most children are able to eat and drink soon after the treatment.
Make An Appointment Today
Good oral health can start early in life with dental sealants and fluoride treatments, procedures that can help your child avoid cavities. To schedule an appointment, call Lake Orion Family Dentistry in Lake Orion, MI, today at 248-693-6213.