Ask Dr. Lynn: Molars, Sealants and Dental Implants

 

My dentist told me that my son’s adult molars should have sealants. Is that necessary?

February was Dental Health Month, and I spent much of the month in schools speaking to children about the importance of taking care of their teeth and preventing tooth decay.

Good home care, professional cleanings and fluoride applications all help prevent decay. This is also true of dental sealants. A sealant is a protective coating that is applied to the chewing surfaces of the teeth, most often a child’s molars.

It is a simple and painless procedure. The sealant serves as a barrier that helps prevent food and plaque from settling into the pits and grooves of the teeth. Remember, keeping teeth for a lifetime takes some effort. It is important to help kids establish a good oral health routine at an early age. Sealants are one of several treatment options that decrease the risk of decay.

I have had dentures for a long time. My uppers have always stayed in but my lowers always move around. I have heard that implants could help. Can you tell me how?

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots that are placed in the jawbone. They can be used to replace a single missing tooth, a few missing teeth or a mouthful of missing teeth. In your case, implants can be used to hold your dentures in place.

You also could use implants to replace your dentures altogether with teeth that do not come out at all. The placement of dental implants is a very common procedure that can be a life changing solution for missing teeth. Dental implants feel and function like natural teeth.

For more information about sealants, dental implants or any other dental question e-mail me at askdrlynn@yahoo.com.

Dear Readers:
Thank you so much for the great response to our new column. We received many excellent questions. Keep the questions coming!

About the Author

Lynn Malone, DDS, is a practicing dentist with the Center for Dental Excellence in Flossmoor, IL; (800) 783-1893. She graduated from the Indiana University School of Dentistry in 1993.

 

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