Preventing Decay with Dental Sealants

Tooth decay is the most common chronic disease for children in the U.S. Almost half the children between the ages of 6 to 11 years old have cavities.1

Decay can be stopped. Good oral care and sealants have been shown to cut tooth decay by about 70 percent.2

Sealants Can Shield Teeth from Decay
Frequent brushing helps. But it is sometimes hard to remove food and plaque from the teeth’s chewing surfaces. Dental sealants are safe. A plastic-like substance is painted onto the chewing areas. It becomes a protective barrier to help “seal out” germs and food that become tooth decay.

Tooth decay is often occurs soon after teeth come into the mouth. That means children are great candidates for sealants. The permanent, back teeth are most likely to have decay, so it is strongly recommended that sealants be applied to these teeth as when they appear.

Sealants are Painless and Safe
Dental sealants have been used safely for 30 or more years. Sealants are strong and can last years before needing to be redone. Sealants not only help prevent tooth decay, they help keep smiles healthy. Often children can avoid other dental procedures.

Talk to your dentist about sealants for your children. You and your dentist can decide what is right.

Check coverage facts in your plan benefits. For more details on the link between oral health and your overall health, visit bcbsnm.com. Log in to Blue Access® for Members. Click on the “My Coverage” tab. Then select “Dental” to visit the Dental Wellness Center. Don’t forget to look for an in-network dentist. In-network dentists offer discounts on services. That will save you money.

Studies also show links between gum disease and other health problems such as stroke, diabetes, and raised risks during pregnancy.

A Complete Preventive Program
Sealants are just one part of a child’s dental care. A strong program also includes:

  • Limited snacking
  • Good food choices
  • Toothpaste with fluoride
  • Twice-daily brushing
  • Flossing daily
  • Regular professional cleanings

You can help! Plan dental visits for your family today!


1 National Institutes of Health, 1999-2004
2 National Institute of Health, 2014

Comment

SIGN IN to share your comments or REGISTER today to become a Connect member.