Dental Health

Are Dental Sealants Right for You?

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During one of your cleanings, your dentist or hygienist might suggest that you get dental sealants. Sealants are also commonly recommended for children as their permanent molars grow in. Have you wondered what sealants are? And if your dental insurance doesn’t cover them, do you want to know if paying for them out of pocket is worth it? Read on for valuable information you should know.

What Are Dental Sealants?

Sealants are a type of liquid filling material that go into the grooves on the biting surfaces of the molars. Because many people have deep pits and grooves in their molars, sealants can prevent bacteria from getting into these deep grooves where they can multiply and cause dental decay. For children, sealants are usually put on as the permanent molars erupt, preventing decay from occuring in the first place. For adults, they’re generally offered only to those with deep pits.

What Is the Procedure Like?

You won’t need any type of anesthetic if you have sealants placed. It’s a quick and non-invasive procedure. First, your hygienist or dentist will clean out the grooves of your teeth by spraying them with water and air. Then, they’ll apply an etching material, which prepares the surface for the filling material. A small amount of material is dripped onto the tooth, and it’s cured with an ultraviolet. The procedure is repeated for each molar being treated. Throughout the procedure, you’ll have a suction straw and cotton rolls in your mouth to keep saliva from contaminating the area.

Will Dental Insurance Cover Dental Sealants?

Many dental insurance carriers will cover the procedure for children under a certain age. They might or might not cover it for adults. Even if yours doesn’t, however, paying for sealants is often less expensive than paying your copay for fillings, root canals, and crowns that might become necessary if you were to develop decay. In addition, sealants are much less invasive than fillings and maintain the integrity of the tooth.

If you have questions about any procedure your dentist recommends, including dental sealants, don’t be afraid to ask! You can ask during your appointment or call us later with any questions.