Dental Sealants Essay

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Dental Sealants & Caries Risk
Dental sealants are used to fill pits and fissures on the occlusal, or chewing, surfaces of the premolars and molars to help protect them from carious lesions and tooth decay (“Dental Sealants”, 2016). Posterior teeth that are selected for placement of sealants are either newly erupted, when occlusal surface is deep and irregular, and have a history of dental caries (Wilkins, 621). So it is very important, especially for children, to get sealants placed as soon as their molars erupt in order to lower their risk for childhood caries. However, there are many factors that have caused children to be withheld from radiographic screenings and treatment; one major factor is parents not being able to afford the treatment. But, one thing that has helped many children get sealants placed is a school sealant programs; funded by the Centers for Disease Control. The CDC has supported for the placement of sealants along with other oral health care activities in many states, including South Carolina. In South Carolina, school sealants programs have been helping save high caries risk teeth since
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There are many factors that can cause caries such as xerostomia, diet high in sugars, low socioeconomic status, and inadequate daily oral hygiene, affecting both children and adults (Wilkins, 621). I also learned that there are sealant programs where dental hygienists volunteer their time to host these programs by providing services such as placement of sealants, radiographic screenings, prophylaxis, application of topical fluorides, and oral health care and treatment free of charge for children who come from low-income households (Collins, 2016). Another thing I learned was that the, “incidence of new pit and fissure caries can be lowered by 86% if the sealant is retained at 1 year, 78.6% at 2 years, and 58.6% at 4 years” (Wilkins,
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