Can you tell me why teeth sealants from a pediatric dentist would keep falling out? It seems that whenever my son goes to the dentist, either he has a new cavity or a sealant has fallen out and needs to be replaced. At first I thought his dentist was just being thorough, but now I’m getting suspicious as to whether or not he is just looking for ways to make money. Even though we have excellent dental coverage, I do care about wasting money on unnecessary expenses. How long are sealants supposed to last? I don’t want my son to starting hating dental visits because he never has a cavity free or issue free checkup. Thanks. Ana
Ana – Dental sealants are very effective in preventing tooth decay—particularly in teeth with deep crevices. But they should not continually fall out.
When properly placed, sealants can last up to ten years. They should at least last several years, but your dentist should occasionally check them to ensure they are intact.
What Can Cause Sealants to Loosen and Fall Out?
- Failure to properly clean, dry, or roughen the tooth surface before placing the sealant
- Inadequate tooth coverage
- Consistently chewing hard or sticky foods
- Natural wear over time
Sealants should be placed to last. Take note of the age of the sealants that need to be replaced. If they were placed within the last year, ask your son’s dentist if he can redo the sealants free of charge. You can also ask why the sealants continuously need to be replaced. If you continue to suspect that unnecessary treatment is being recommended, or that you are being overcharged, consider taking your son to a reputable pediatric dentist for a second opinion.
You can ask friends or family members for recommendations of a new pediatric dentist. Also, check the dentist’s online reviews. Remember that you don’t have to commit to keeping the new dentist. You can even request a consultation before scheduling a regular visit for your son.
This post is sponsored by award-winning Naperville dentist Dr. Anthony LaVacca.