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Fissure Sealants and Fillings

When your child’s adult back teeth first emerge, they are cavity-free, and fissure sealants can help to keep them that way! We recommend fissure sealants are applied soon after your child’s adult back teeth erupt because they cannot be used on teeth that already have decay or fillings.

What are Fissure Sealants?

Little girl holding dental xrayFissure sealants are made from a thin, flowable plastic material that is applied to the large chewing surfaces of adult back teeth. These surfaces have lots of deep grooves and fissures that can be tricky to clean with a toothbrush. Sealing these surfaces helps to prevent decay-causing bacteria and food from becoming trapped, creating a surface that is smooth and easy to clean.

What Is the Procedure?

Fissure sealants are quick and painless to apply. First, we will clean your child’s teeth before lightly etching the tooth surfaces that are to be sealed because this helps to create a stronger bond between the sealant and the tooth. Next, the sealant is painted onto the tooth and is quickly hardened using a curing light. That’s it!

How Long Will Fissure Sealants Last?

The material used is quite durable, so it should be several years before your child needs another application, but we will check the condition of their fissure sealants on every visit.

Our dental team will carefully check your child’s teeth for any signs of cavities during every appointment. Ideally, any small lesions are treated with fluoride applications which can help to halt or reverse the earliest signs of tooth decay. It is essential that any cavities should be treated as soon as possible before the infection can worsen and spread. Without treatment, there is the risk that we would need to remove your child’s tooth, which is a situation we try very hard to avoid. When milk teeth are lost too early, it can create problems with the development of adult teeth, and tooth loss makes it much harder to learn to speak and to eat correctly.

What Happens If My Child Needs a Filling?

We treat any child as if they were our own and will go out of our way to ensure your child feels relaxed and comfortable as possible, and that treatment is pain-free. A topical anaesthetic is always used to numb the gum, so injections are pain-free. Our dental team are incredibly gentle, especially with a child who might be anxious or in discomfort. Your child’s tooth will be carefully filled using advanced dental materials and techniques, restoring their ability to eat and speaking comfort, and their smile.


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