Q. My neighbor and I were chatting, and she mentioned that her child had just gotten sealants at the dentist. Should my children be getting them also?
A. Yes, you should have them placed on your children’s teeth at their next dental appointment. Routinely placed on permanent teeth, sealants have been shown to effectively prevent cavities for over 30 years. A sealant is placed as a liquid in the groove of the tooth, called a fissure, the most common place to get a cavity. The sealant is cured in place with a curing light and then is ready to keep food particles and bacteria from getting in the grooves of the teeth. This is a fast, simple, painless procedure any child should be able to endure. I also recommend sealants for adult teeth without fillings. Many of us had sealants as children, but after 30 years they need to be replaced. Insurance routinely covers 100 percent of the cost of sealants for children so there is no reason not to get them.
Mark McOmie, D.M.D.
McOmie Family Dentistry
5999 Shallowford Road
Chattanooga, TN 37421