Children’s Fissure Sealants | Avenue Dental Sunshine Coast

A fissure sealant is a tooth-colored material that is professionally applied to the deep grooves (fissures) of the teeth to help prevent decay.

The teeth that usually require fissure sealants are the molar teeth where tooth decay most often starts. The Australian Dental Association states that fissures of teeth are 5 times more susceptible to develop decay than other tooth surfaces.

Most children benefit from fissure sealants as it is a preventative treatment. Dental decay is common in teeth with deep grooves (fissures) as bacteria can easily be trapped in these grooves. Even with great dental hygiene, tooth brush bristles may not remove all debris caught in fissures. Over time, bacteria produce acids which then can cause tooth decay. If left untreated, pain may occur, potentially leading to large restorations or even tooth loss. This can all be avoided with a simple preventive fissure sealant. Fissure sealants are almost a third of the cost of a filling which can be seen as a great investment in your childs oral health, providing prevention and minimising their risk of decay.

Children develop their first adult molars, known as 6 year old molars, at the usual age of 6 to 7 years. These teeth need to last a lifetime and can naturally have deep  anatomical grooves. Sealing these teeth as soon as they erupt in the mouth can be crucial as children at this age haven’t developed their dexterity so may be missing these teeth frequently.  During your child’s active maintenance appointment, we will assess their fissures and discuss if sealants is something that your child will benefit from.

The procedure of fissure sealants is easier than a filling and no anesthetic is required. The hardest part is staying nice and wide for a few short minutes. It starts with the surface of the tooth being thoroughly cleaned to ensure the sealant bonds strong to the tooth. Then the flow-able white sealant material is placed into the grooves of the teeth and set with a bright blue light.  We then check that the sealant is perfect and make sure its super smooth. Just like that it is finished! The aftercare of dental sealants is also simple. Ensuring that your child eats nutritious low sugar food and drinks water (rather than Coke!) will keep those sealants strong. Also practicing good brushing and flossing daily will maintain the sealants and prevent other teeth from decaying.  Attending regular  active maintenance appointments will also allow us to keep an eye on those sealants to ensure they stay strong.

Fissure sealants are a great way to help prevent dental decay in children.  At Avenue Dental in our Caloundra, Kawana and Maroochydore dental practices we have caring dentists and oral health therapists who are talented in placing fissure sealants in children’s teeth.