When it comes to raising children, there’s no shortage of advice out there! From gluten-free diets to the right way to secure a child in a car seat, all the information can be overwhelming. So when it comes to dental sealants in Rowlett, how can you sort out fact from fiction? On one hand, you’ve heard that they’re excellent for preventing decay in your children’s back teeth, but on the other, you may have heard that they’re dangerous or ineffective. Since we hear questions about this topic so often, we thought we’d write a blog to address five of the most common misconceptions about sealants. Keep reading to learn more!
“Sealants Aren’t Safe”
While it’s true that sealants contain Bisphenol A (BPA), it’s in such minuscule amounts that the exposure is negligible.
In fact, according to the ADA, simply breathing the air exposes a child to 100 times more BPA than they would get from sealants.
Another way to put it in perspective is to consider that 96% of total BPA exposure comes from foods and beverages, while only 0.001% comes from dental sealants.
Clearly, the benefits of sealants far outweigh any risks!
“Sealants Aren’t Covered by Insurance”
Thankfully, sealants are actually covered by many insurance plans. There’s so much solid evidence that they work to prevent cavities that dental insurance companies know that it’s in their own best interest to cover them. After all, preventing a cavity is much easier and less expensive than treating one!
If you’re not sure if your plan includes sealant coverage, don’t hesitate to ask your kids’ dentist in Rowlett.
“Sealants Can Only Be Used on Teeth That Have Never Had Cavities”
Studies clearly show that sealants are not only effective in preventing decay on “virgin” teeth but can also keep existing small cavities from getting bigger.
If these areas of early-stage decay can be caught soon enough, it’s possible that a sealant can be used instead of a filling. Your dentist will recommend the appropriate treatment based on the situation.
“The ADA Hasn’t Given a Stamp of Approval”
You may have heard that the American Dental Association hasn’t endorsed the use of sealants for cavity prevention, but the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs has actually recommended sealants for many years!
“A Fluoride Varnish Is Better”
Don’t get us wrong – it’s always a good idea to have your children’s dentist in Rowlett apply a fluoride varnish because it’s great for cavity prevention. However, fluoride works very differently than sealants, so one doesn’t take the place of the other.
Fluoride strengthens the teeth, much like calcium strengthens the bones. Sealants cover and protect the tiny, microscopic grooves on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth that can’t be reached with a toothbrush.
Even if fluoride has been applied, cavity-causing bacteria can get into these grooves and cause decay. In fact, three studies with over 2,000 subjects found that patients who had sealants had 73% fewer cavities than patients who had only had fluoride varnishes.
Now that we’ve cleared up these misconceptions, you’ll be able to make a more informed decision about this wonderful tool for cavity prevention!
About the Author
Dr. Tera Pollock is a children’s dentist who understands the power of prevention. Her goal is to keep her pediatric patients out of the dental chair as much as possible over the course of their lifetime by providing a variety of preventative treatments in childhood. If you have any questions, she can be reached via her website or at (972) 475-0301.