It was back in the 60s that you first saw Crest toothpaste advertisements telling you how if you used fluoride toothpaste, it would form a protective layer over your teeth and prevent cavities. That helped for about 25 years, until in the 80s, dentists discovered a new kind of tooth sealant – plastic.
When you take your children in to have their teeth sealed, the doctor drips a kind of liquid plastic over the tops of their teeth – especially their molars – and completely seals them in.The tooth sealant gets into every nook and cranny of every tooth that is applied on, and it seals everything.
It makes sure that food never get stuck in any little fissure or anything, only to cause trouble by rotting later on. Tooth sealant treatment is approved by the American Dental Association. So there could be no problems right?
Studies show that children who get this kind of treatment have a 40% greater chance of getting by without cavities. The idea behind the treatment itself can make a lot of sense. The problem though lies in the plastic that they use.The USDA has been studying the plastics used. Apparently, when it comes into contact with saliva, the plastic lets out a particularly harmful chemical called BPA.
This is a compound that mimics female estrogen. The artificial hormone can make little girls attain puberty earlier, and it can cause diabetes or cancer in people in general. The FDA says that it’s reasonably safe. Because tooth sealant contains a very small quantities of chemical.
BPA is not a chemical that’s exclusive to tooth sealant. It’s found in baby bottles, in cans used to can food and so on. There was has been such uproar over the use of BPA over the years that the companies that make tooth sealant plastics – companies like Ultra Seal – have been studying the materials they use. These days, they and other companies like them – like 3M for instance – make tooth sealant compounds that don’t have the BPA problem.
Basically, if you’re going to get your child’s teeth sealed, you should probably ask for one of these new generation dental sealants for kids. Nevertheless but even if your child does have the old kind, you probably shouldn’t worry about it that much. If your child has ever eaten canned food or drug from a baby bottle, he’s probably already got all the BPA contamination is ever going to get.