Are Dental Sealants Safe?
If you or your child are prone to cavities and decay, dental sealants at John T Green DDS can be placed on your molars and premolars to help combat the build-up of bacteria and prevent decay! Dental sealants are pretty common for children and while it is not as common with adults, they can be placed on anyone who is a candidate, regardless of age.
Dental sealants are placed on the occlusal surface of your back teeth. This is the flat part of your teeth, the chewing surface which has grooves and fissures that can benefit from a little extra protection. Before they are placed, your dentist will use an etching material to roughen the surface and ensure proper adhesion once the sealant is cured in place. You will not be able to feel the sealant after it is placed.
The concerns regarding dental sealants involve BPA, or bisphenol A, which is a chemical compound found in plastics and mimics naturally occurring estrogen. BPA has been linked to an increased risk for certain diseases and cancers, as studied in laboratory animals. BPA is a common ingredient in polycarbonate plastics but is not used in the makeup of dental sealants. One product does show evidence of BPA but it comes from the chemical breakdown of the ingredient with it is mixed with saliva. The increase only lasts a few hours and after 24 hours, is completely undetectable. We actually are exposed to BPAs more through polycarbonate food containers including water bottles, milk cartons and baby bottles. The amounts are lower than what is deemed tolerable and the possibility of BPA exposure through dental sealants is a rare occurrence.
Your dentist can discuss the facts and findings with you in greater detail if you are uncomfortable with anything. Keep in mind, the potential for exposure to BPA through dental sealants is so minute and rare that there is no scientific evidence to support an association between dental sealants and adverse health conditions. Using dental sealants as a preventative measure is a great way to protect against buildup and decay in your child’s teeth and even your own if you are susceptible to decay.
The benefits greatly outweigh the risks of dental sealants so if you are considering them as treatment for you or your child, discuss it with your doctor. Treating teeth with decay is much more costly and time-consuming than preventing them so to avoid expensive restorations, do everything you can to ensure that you and your child have good oral hygiene habits and take preventative measures such as having dental sealants.
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