What You Need to Know About Dental Sealants


Dental sealants have become a popular service for parents seeking some extra protection for their children’s teeth. But why are sealants important? And what can they offer that a routine teeth cleaning cannot?

Before discussing the importance of dental sealants, let’s go over what a dental sealant is and how it works.

What Are Dental Sealants?

A protective dental sealant is a thin protective coating that is usually made from plastic or other dental materials. It adheres to the surface of your molars, which are the teeth we use for chewing. 

A sealant acts as a shield for your teeth. When we eat, bacteria from food particles remains on our teeth. And when this bacteria is not swept away by brushing, flossing, or mouthwash, it can attack the tooth and cause decay, better known as a cavity. 

But with a sealant standing in the way, those food particles (and the bacteria they carry) never actually come into contact with the tooth. Instead, they come to rest on the surface of the sealant and not the tooth itself. 

Why Are Sealants Important?

Cavities are so common in children because kids have not yet perfected the art of brushing their teeth. Young brushers tend to miss spots and leave harmful food particles on the surface of their teeth. The bacteria present in these food particles is a big reason why more than 50 percent of children develop a cavity between the ages of 6 and 11. 

Sealants have been shown to reduce the risk of tooth decay in molars by almost 80 percent, and school-age children without sealants have nearly three times as many cavities as children with sealants. 

Sealants are applied with a brush and the process is completely painless. By protecting your child’s teeth from cavities, they can avoid costly repair work in the future and put them on a track toward a happy and healthy smile in adulthood. 

Dental Sealants Near You

Wilson Pediatric Dentistry is a kids dentist in Greenville, NC, offering dental sealants to children along with a range of other dental services. Contact us to learn more about our sealant service and consider adding the protection to your children’s teeth that will keep them smiling for years to come.


How Can Dental Sealants Protect Your Children’s Teeth?

dentist applying dental selants to a child's teeth with a purple light

Teaching children to brush and floss efficiently enough to prevent cavities can be a challenge for even the most diligent parents. Factor in all the juice and other sweets children get their hands on and it’s no wonder over 40 percent of kids under 11 develop cavities on their baby teeth. 

Fortunately, there’s an easier way to protect children’s teeth from plaque, bacteria, and decay. Many parents today are turning to dental sealants for help.

How Dental Sealants Work

So how can dental sealants protect your children’s teeth?

A dental sealant is a very thin layer of plastic coating that is applied to the surfaces of teeth. They are most often used on the back teeth where most chewing takes place. The sealant fills the grooves and crevices of the teeth to form a protective shield over the enamel. This protective shield forms a barrier between food and the actual tooth, making it more difficult for sugar and other harmful substances to attack the tooth.

Applying Sealants

Applying dental sealants is not a difficult process. Your children’s teeth will first be cleaned and dried. Then an acid substance is placed on the teeth to provide the sealants something to bond with. After rinsing and drying the teeth again, the sealant is then “painted” onto the teeth with a brush where it then hardens.

Dental sealants are recommended during the cavity-prone ages of six to 14. Dental sealants can last for up to 10 years and will be inspected for wear and tear during regular checkups. Many insurance companies provide coverage for the cost of dental sealants for patients under 18 years of age.  

Where to Get Dental Sealants for Your Children

Wilson Pediatric Dentistry is happy to provide dental sealants and other treatments for your child. We understand that visiting a dentist can be scary for a child and that’s why we’ve dedicated our practice to providing the best possible experience for young patients in a fun and comfortable environment. Our team has years of training and experience working with children, even ones who have had negative experiences at a dentist in the past.   

Schedule an appointment today for our Wooten Blvd location in Wilson, NC to help put a smile on your child’s face.