The goal of preventative dentistry is to maintain oral health so that no restorative dentistry is ever needed. In other words, preventing cavities, gum disease, and enamel wear. This is what we aim for at David Rice DDS in Elgin.
We believe that brushing your teeth and flossing is a good beginning to preventative dentistry. It is also imperative that you get exams and dental cleanings twice a year. With children, dental sealants might be a good option.
Dental sealants are a thin plastic covering, ordinarily used on the very back teeth. These teeth are especially susceptible to trapped food particles, and at the same time tend to be the hardest ones to brush. The goal of a sealant is to safeguard a tooth against decay, which is always preferable to filling a cavity.
Despite efforts to keep children’s teeth healthy, many kids develop several cavities during their childhood years. Since the rate of tooth decay typically declines with age, if teeth remain intact during childhood, there is a better chance that these teeth can stay healthy for decades.
Sealants act as a barrier between food particles, plaque, and the teeth. The good news is that sealants are easy to apply and last for years. After Dr. Rice applies the sealants, they will be checked with each visit and re-applied as needed. If you are interested in sealants for your child (or yourself), check your dental insurance policy – they may be a covered benefit. Even if not covered by your dental insurance, sealants are a wise investment.
Brushing, flossing, and regular cleanings help ensure that teeth are strong and clean and will last a lifetime. Changing your toothbrush every few months and using a toothpaste with fluoride are also essential components of proper oral care.