Dental Sealants in Wauwatosa
What are Dental Sealants?
Sealants are a prevention for tooth decay down the road. A sealant is a plastic resin material that is used to fill deep grooves in teeth that might be hiding plaque and bacteria. Once they are filled by your Wauwatosa dentist, cleaning those teeth becomes much easier. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!
How are sealants placed?
Sealants are easy and pain free for you or your children. They don’t require any numbing of the tooth because we don’t have to drill down into the tooth like we do for a cavity. The tooth is roughened and the grooves are cleaned out. The plastic resin then placed on the tooth and chemically bonded to the the tooth to create a clean, smooth surface. Call us to learn more!
Are they just for kids?
While most people think of sealants as just something you do for kids, they have benefits for anyone with deep grooves in their teeth. In children, the goal is to make the sealant last long enough for them to grow up and learn to care for their teeth better. In adults and teens, we can use stronger materials to fill those grooves creating a more permanent fix. This is commonly referred to as a preventative resin restoration or PRR for short. Ask Dr. McCue if a sealant or a PRR is right for you or your child. Contact our office today!
How Long Do Dental Sealants Last?
Dental sealants are built for durability and can last for up to 10 years. They never need to be removed because they will just wear away with time. However, they do need to be routinely replaced and can become damaged or dislodged due to wear and tear.
This is why it’s important to attend regular dental appointments every 6 months, where the dentist will check on the condition of your dental sealants to see if they need to be repaired or replaced. As time goes on, the more prone to damage your sealants are.
Studies show that sealants are most effective at presenting cavities within the first 4 years of placement. To extend the lifespan of your sealants, we recommend that you avoid chewing hard, sticky, and crunchy foods, wear a mouthguard if you grind your teeth, and avoid using your teeth as tools. Don’t use hard-bristle toothbrushes.
What Are the Benefits of Dental Sealants?
Dental sealants improve your child’s ability to thoroughly clean the rear molars, which are most prone to harboring food particles and bacteria in the pits and grooves. They also seal out acids and bacteria from penetrating the tooth enamel which effectively reduces your child’s risk of cavities.
Dental sealants are highly effective, with an 80% success rate in preventing cavities in the first 2 years and a 50% success rate in the first 4 years. This makes them one of the best preventive tools while also offering significant advantages like being non-invasive, painless, affordable, and quick.
Sealants reduce the risk of more costly and invasive treatments like root canals by preventing tooth decay in the first place. They’re also highly durable and can last for 10 years with proper care and oral hygiene.
Are Dental Sealants Covered By Insurance?
Yes, most dental insurance plans will cover dental sealants for children under 18. This is because dental sealants are an effective preventive treatment that prevents the need for more costly treatment to reverse tooth decay and tooth infections.
They are most effective when they are placed as soon as the first and second permanent molars come through at ages 6 and 12. For this reason, insurance companies are less likely to cover dental sealants for adults since they are not as effective at preventing tooth decay when they are placed later in life.
Preventive treatments, including dental sealants, are usually covered up to 100% after meeting your insurance’s deductible and waiting period requirements. Contact your insurance provider to find out if they cover dental sealants and if they have an age limit.
Interested In Dental Sealants? Schedule a Consultation Today!
If you’re interested in dental sealants for you or your child, contact us at McCue Dental Health today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Shaun McCue. We accept a variety of insurance plans and offer a discount to patients without insurance as well as financing options through CareCredit.