The adult first permanent molar teeth tend to come into the mouth at just six years old. This is a critical period for protecting them because the diet between 6-12 tends to have higher levels of sugar. We often find that when people need to have more extensive dental treatment later in life, e.g root canal treatments or crowns, it can be linked back to damage that started soon after these particular teeth erupted in to the mouth.
We can protect the molar teeth from decay by putting a white plastic coating on the tooth soon after it comes into the mouth, called a fissure sealant. The coating plugs the natural depressions and grooves on the tooth’s biting surface called pits and fissures. Fissure sealants protect the teeth from acid attack after eating sugar (dental decay). This procedure is a particularly good idea if there has been any problems with decay in the baby teeth or if the molar teeth have deep grooves.
The procedure is very straightforward- we dry the tooth, place a conditioning agent on it which we then wash off soon after and then apply the sealant and shine the curing light on the area to set it. Placing fissure sealants is a very straight forward and painless process and can often help to boost the child’s confidence if they are nervous about visiting the dentist. Sealants can also be placed by Dental Hygienists.
We generally fissure seal the four first molar teeth at the back of the mouth which come at around age 6 so this is a good age to consider this procedure. Any child can have these teeth sealed but we particularly advise having them done if the natural pits and fissures in the tooth are deep of if there has been a history of decay in the baby teeth.
To make an appointment give us a call at www.balbriggandental.ie on 01 6903464.