For some kids, there is often a high risk of developing tooth decay. This could be linked to difficulty reaching their back teeth when they brush and floss. To help kids enjoy a reduced risk of cavities, your Redmond, OR, dentist may suggest dental sealants. How does a dental sealant help kids, and when should your child receive them?
What Causes a Cavity?
A cavity means that harmful bacteria has been able to move past the protective layer of tooth enamel and reach the inner portions of dentin, which are much more sensitive. The outer layer of enamel could become weakened and eroded as a result of plaque buildup, which forms when we consume sugary foods and drinks and don’t brush and floss properly. The teeth could also become cracked or chipped as a result of an injury. If you attend regular checkups, then we will likely identify the problem in the early stages, often before your child experiences discomfort. Otherwise, you should let us know if your child complains about tooth sensitivity or toothaches.
The Dental Sealants
With a dental sealant, we dry the rear teeth and apply a special acrylic coating. After we cure the layer, your child can continue to eat, brush, and floss as usual. The layer prevents food from becoming trapped between the rear teeth, which are hard for kids to reach when brushing and flossing. The sealant will stay in place for years and wear away gradually with time. We can always reapply in future visits as needed.
We also have fluoride treatments that we can apply during each checkup and cleaning visit. This involves applying the mineral in a varnish form. Fluoride actually strengthens outer enamel, which is why we add it to our community’s drinking water. This helps kids avoid the onset of cavities. You can further help them by providing healthier snack and drink options, avoiding sugary snacks, candies, and sodas. Make sure they brush and floss each day properly. Kids should brush for two minutes in the morning and again at night, using a toothpaste with fluoride. They need to floss before bed as well. Every six months, your children should see our team for a checkup and cleaning as well, so we can monitor their smile and identify possible problem areas in the earliest stages. If you have any questions, or if you would like to schedule a visit, then contact our team today.
Do You Have Questions About Children’s Dentistry?
We have routine treatment options to help kids of all ages enjoy better oral health and gain an improved understanding of their smiles. To learn more about our approach to children’s dentistry, then schedule a consultation by calling Coppertop Family Dentistry in Redmond, OR, today at 541-923-5927.