What is a sealant and does my child need them?

A sealant is a non-invasive procedure in which a composite coating is bonded to the occlusal (chewing) surfaces of permanent molars and fills in the pits and fissures in order to keep out plaque and bacteria from cavity prone areas. Not every tooth needs a sealant. It is based on the tooth anatomy and groove depth, the oral hygiene, the ability to keep the grooves of the tooth in question clean, and the susceptibility of the tooth to decay.

Although sealants are spectacular in preventing decay on the chewing surfaces of permanent teeth, there is little need for them on baby molars, since those teeth tend to have very smooth grooves and are much less likely to get the kind of cavity that sealants are so great at preventing.

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