Pit and Fissure Sealants

Would you like your children’s teeth to be protected against cavities? Do you want the best options for their oral health? Pit and fissure sealants may be a good way to help prevent cavities for your children.

On the top surface of molars and premolars, you can easily see some pits and fissures (deep grooves) that are naturally present. For children, it is often difficult for them to brush all the way back and into those areas. They either lack the dexterity or those spots are too deep for them to brush well. It is very easy for food debris and dental plaque to accumulate in those areas. A cavity can easily develop in such an environment.

Sealants are one of the best ways to protect and prevent those pits and fissures from accumulating dental plaque and food debris and preventing tooth decay.  As soon as your child’s first permanent molars erupt, an examination with your child’s dentist should be performed. The dentist will check to make sure there are no cavities present.  Then your dentist or the dental hygienist can apply sealants to your child’s permanent molars and premolars.

The treatment:

At the sealant appointment, the dentist or hygienist will start by cleaning the surface of the tooth using a special paste. A blue liquid (etch) will be put in place to roughen the top surface of the tooth in order to make sure that the sealant material holds on. Then, the sealant material which is a liquid, will be applied to the pits and fissures. A blue curing light will be used to harden the sealant material. At the end, the occlusion (the way the teeth close together) must be verified to make sure that the sealant is not too high and creating an imbalance. The occlusion is verified with blue indicator paper. The treatment is performed without local anesthetic and doesn’t take much time.

Pit and fissure sealants are a preventative method recommended by many dental professionals and should be considered by every parent. You can ask your hygienist or dentist about sealants at your child’s next appointment.