A dental sealant is a plastic material that coats the tooth to protect it from tooth decay. Sealants are routinely placed on the chewing surfaces of back teeth of children to prevent cavities.
Dental sealants have been shown to prevent decay on tooth surfaces with pits and grooves where food and dental plaque can stick to the teeth. They act as a barrier, protecting the enamel from dental plaque and acids that cause tooth decay. Your dentist may suggest using dental sealants on your child’s back teeth.
Sealants are generally not used on teeth that already have fillings. They should be used as part of a child’s total preventive dental care, which includes good oral hygiene, healthy food choices, optimal fluoride exposure and regular dental visits.
Fluoride has a positive effect on oral health by making teeth stronger and more resistant to decay. It can also prevent or even reverse early tooth decay.
Fluoride is a natural element found in soil, water and various foods. Because it is present to some extent in all food and water, almost everyone ingests some fluoride on a daily basis. More than 50 years of extensive research has consistently demonstrated the safety and effectiveness of fluorides in the prevention of tooth decay.