Are dental sealants necessary for children?

Dental sealants are an excellent preventative measure against pit and fissure tooth decay (cavities that form in the developmental grooves of teeth).  However, not every child needs them.  In our practice, the recommendation is based on a caries risk assessment and is different for every individual.  Diet, habits, home care, and genetics all play a part in a child's risk for developing cavities. When performing a dental exam, these factors as well as the existing condition of the teeth are examined and used to determine the risk for decay.  If the risk is high, sealants may be recommended.  However, if the teeth are in great condition, home care is good, and the child receives regular dental care, sealants are likely not needed.  These factors are reassessed at each visit and recommendations are made accordingly.  The best thing you can do is to find a dentist that you can trust to be thorough and be sure your child goes regularly for exams and cleanings.  Our ultimate goal is to help prevent your child from developing cavities, so they can grow up with strong healthy teeth.