February is Children’s Dental Health Month, which means your children’s dentist is eager to share ways to improve your little one’s oral health in-office and at home. To ensure your child’s teeth are protected from decay and disease, there’s no better time than now to discuss dental sealants and fluoride treatment. Read on to find out what your dentist has to say about their benefits and why they should be part of your child’s next appointment.
Why Are Dental Sealants and Fluoride Important?
A child’s teeth are particularly vulnerable to tooth decay and cavities. Because their brushing and flossing techniques are not quite established or perfected, it can be hard to reach certain areas of the mouth to effectively clean and remove harmful bacteria and food particles.
With this knowledge, your child’s dentist takes extra measures to provide additional protection to young teeth. With dental sealants and fluoride treatments, you can rest easy knowing that your child’s teeth are protected by a barrier that thwarts decay.
Dental sealants cover the chewing surfaces of teeth, preventing decay from occurring in the small pits and crevices of your child’s teeth. Since these areas are prone to trapping food and bacteria, it is easy for cavities to develop over time.
Just as important as dental sealants are regular fluoride treatments. Since decay is a likely possibility for baby teeth, applying fluoride to your child’s teeth can ensure they are protected from decay and the enamel of their teeth is strengthened. Fluoride should be applied to permanent teeth as well.
This beneficial mineral is found in drinking water and most toothpaste brands but to make sure they are getting the most protection possible, having your child’s dentist provide additional treatment is beneficial to keep their smile happy and healthy.
How Are Sealants Applied?
When bringing your child in for their appointment, your dentist will first begin by cleaning the surfaces of their teeth before etching them with a substance. This will help the sealant to attach to the tooth. After spreading a thin layer over the surface of the back teeth, she will use a special UV light to harden the sealant to each tooth.
How is a Fluoride Treatment Performed?
This quick and painless procedure takes less than a minute to apply. Once your child’s teeth are cleaned by a dental hygienist, a fluoride varnish is painted onto each individual tooth. After a few minutes, the varnish will dry, creating a protecting barrier over their teeth. For full effectiveness, it is recommended that your child not eat or drink anything for 20 minutes after the application.
It’s important that your child’s teeth have the greatest amount of protection as they grow and develop into adulthood. Start them off on the right path by having dental sealants and fluoride applied during their next appointment.
About the Author
Dr. Dina H. Cocco earned her bachelor’s degree at Central Michigan University before completing her dental degree at the University of Michigan in 1989. Providing the latest in dental care since 1990, she is committed to participating in continuing education courses and sharing her knowledge and expertise to ensure her patients receive the very best. From children to adults, Dr. Cocco offers valuable treatments to keep decay and disease away as well as provide insightful tips on ways to improve oral health at home. For questions about our services, visit our website or call (734) 668-8636.